PM seeks Qatari investment in energy, Govt also seeking deferred payment plan for LNG bought under long term deals Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has invited Qatar to invest in Pakistan’s energy and aviation sectors during a meeting with the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) in Doha on Tuesday.

PM seeks Qatari investment in energy, The meeting was attended by federal ministers Syed Naveed Qamar, Mariyam Aurangzeb and Ayaz Sadiq, and State Minister Hina Rabbani Khar. Mansoor Bin Ebrahim Al-Mahmoud, CEO of Qatar Investment Authority – one of the largest sovereign wealth funds of the world, and Sheikh Faisal Thani Al-Thani, Chief Investment Officer of Africa and Asia-Pacific Regions represented the QIA. During the meeting, the prime minister highlighted Pakistan’s liberal and business-friendly investment policies in this regard. He also urged Qatari investors to explore the opportunities presented by the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) aimed at promoting regional connectivity and mutual prosperity. Investment in other areas including tourism and petroleum products also came under discussion. Earlier during the Pakistan-Qatar Trade and Investment Roundtable, PM Shehbaz had similarly invited Qatari businessmen to invest in Pakistan’s energy, aviation, agriculture, livestock, maritime, tourism and hospitality sectors.

PM seeks Qatari investment in energy, Lauding Qatar’s rapid economic development under the visionary leadership of the Qatar’s Emir, the prime minister reiterated that Pakistan attached high importance to its relations with Qatar and wanted to upgrade the traditionally warm political ties between the two countries into a comprehensive economic partnership. The prime minister stressed the need to further enhance bilateral economic and investment engagement, particularly in the renewable energy including solar and wind power generation, aviation, maritime, industrial and infrastructure development, and hospitality sectors. He underlined that Pakistan’s unique geographic and demographic advantages, which combined its strategic location with a huge middle-class market and a large skilled workforce. The PM assured full facilitation to QIA through transparent and expeditious processes. As part of the event, a number of presentations were made by the relevant ministries highlighting the potential of foreign investment in the fields of food security, energy, maritime, aviation, hospitality and tourism sectors.

It was agreed that designated focal persons on both sides will closely follow-up on the key proposals for investments. The prime minister invited Mansoor bin Ebrahim Al-Mehmoud and Sheikh Faisal Thani Al-Thani to visit Pakistan at their earliest convenience to build on the momentum generated by the visit. Terming Pakistan as a priority country, the QIA delegation expressed keen interest and readiness to actively pursue investment opportunities in Pakistan. It may be noted that along with a balance of payment crisis due to foreign reserves falling to as low as $7.8 billion, Pakistan is also facing a widening current account deficit (CAD) and a historic depreciation of the rupee against the U.S. dollar. In July it posted inflation of 24.9%. Sharif’s Qatar visit precedes an International Monetary Fund meeting next week that is expected to approve a $1.2 billion tranche of lending, which has been stalled since the beginning of the year. According to Reuters, the PM’s office did not give details of his agenda but two sources close to him said he was expected to offer Qatar shares in state-owned enterprises (SOEs) including the loss-making Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) and the Roosevelt Hotel in New York. They added that he is also expected to offer the opportunity to manage Pakistan’s airports and hoped to secure energy deals. The report further claims that Pakistan is also seeking a deferred payment plan for the LNG bought under long term deals. Currently, the country has two long-term LNG supply deals with Qatar to provide up to nine cargoes a month. “We will surely seek any facility of deferred payments on our LNG deals,” an aide to Sharif told Reuters, adding that the country was also seeking support for its foreign reserves to the tune of $2 billion. Earlier on Monday, the Cabinet approved a draft agreement that allows the government to provide troops for security at the FIFA soccer World Cup in Qatar this year.

Source: This news is originally published by profit.pakistantoday

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