Pakistan committed to gas pipeline project, Zardari tells Iranian VP

President ZardariISLAMABAD: President Asif Ali Zardari said on Tuesday that Pakistan was committed to the swift implementation of the Iran-Pakistan Gas Pipeline Project so as to meet the ever-growing demand of energy and power in the country.

In a meeting with visiting Iranian Vice President Ali Seedlou here at the Presidency, President Zardari said the government was also pursuing a trade liberalisation policy across the border and proposed elimination of tariff and non-tariff barriers between the two countries to boost trade ties further and realise the true business and trade potential.

The president said the recent agreement between the two countries to work towards expanding the Pakistan-Iran Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) to include additional items form both sides and making it an agenda item for the next meeting of the trade committee was a welcome move to enhance trade links between the two countries.

Zardari said enhancing bilateral cooperation particularly in energy, security, communication and infrastructure would help the two countries overcome the challenges in the way of realising the full potential of their equation and to realise the goal of raising the bilateral trade to $5 billion, which he said was doable.The Iranian vice president was accompanied by senior Iranian Foreign Office officials. The Iranian Ambassador to Pakistan Alireza Haghighian was also present during the meeting.Seedlou said Iran had already laid gas pipelines on its side of the border and was ready for the implementation of the extremely important Iran-Pakistan Gas Pipeline Project. – PT