ISLAMABAD: The International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC) signed a 3-Year framework agreement for a cumulative amount of US$4.5 billion with the Government of Pakistan in order to provide financing for the import of essential commodities such as crude oil, refined petroleum products, LNG and urea. 

Within the context of its trade integrated solutions approach, the framework agreement also covers ITFC’s support for trade-related technical assistance projects in Pakistan, which will be selected jointly by both parties according to the national economic priorities and development plan of the country. The agreement will facilitate the identification of other areas of cooperation at country and regional levels and to enhance and promote trade, trade capacities of relevant state authorities and financial institutions and trade cooperation in Pakistan.

The signing took place virtually, Minister of Economic Affairs Omar Ayub Khan witnessed the signing ceremony between ITFC CEO Hani Salem Sonbol and Secretary Ministry of Economic Affairs Noor Ahmed. 

The financing available through this facility will be utilized by Pakistan State Oil (PSO), Pak-Arab Refinery Ltd (PARCO) and Pakistan LNG Ltd (PLL) for the import of crude oil, refined petroleum products and LNG during the years 2021-2023.

IFTC CEO stated that this framework agreement reflects the importance of the longstanding cooperation between ITFC and the Government of Pakistan. “ITFC is continuously working closely with its member countries to meet their requirements by providing integrated solutions that include financing and capacity building tools that allows for maximizing the development impact of ITFC interventions. We are delighted and we will continue to mobilize financial resources to support Pakistan in its endeavours to achieve its economic targets through the new agreement.”

The economic affairs minister thanked the ITFC for arranging this financing, which will help Pakistan in meeting its import requirements of oil and LNG and ease pressure on cash reserves of the country. 

The minister deeply commended the role and endeavours of Hani Salem Sonbol and his team for arranging this financing at a very challenging time. This agreement will further strengthen the partnership between Pakistan and ITFC.

The author is a business correspondent based in Islamabad.

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