ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: The total bilateral trade between Pakistan and Russia stood at US$ 945.87 million in the Fiscal Year 2020-21 with a trade balance of US$ -620.99 million.
In a written reply to a question by Nafeesa Inayatullah Khan Khattak, the Minister for Commerce told the National Assembly on August 2 that during the FY 2020-21, the exports of Pakistan to Russia were recorded to be US$ 171.94 million whereas the imports from Russia to Pakistan were recorded to be US$ 773.93 million.
The House was told that Pakistan‘s major exports to Russia include kinnow, mandarins, articles of apparel of leather, potatoes, denim fabrics of cotton, men/boys ensembles, instruments and appliances used in medical or veterinary sciences, gloves covered with plastics, plain weave polyester, woven fabric of cotton, and bed linen, etc.
Whereas Pakistan‘s major imports from Russia include durum wheat, wheat and meslin, peas, isobutene-isoprene (butyl) rubber, natural gas, styrene-butadien rubber, newsprint, paper, vaccines, lentils dried, and chickpeas, etc.
The minister told that no trade agreements between Pakistan and Russia have been signed during the last three years.
Apprising the House about steps taken by the government to improve trade in 2021, the minister told that a delegation to the Russian Federation was planned under the leadership of Secretary Commerce in June/July 2021 to explore avenues of mutual cooperation and enhancement of bilateral trade and economic relations.
However, the same was postponed on account of travel restrictions by the Russian Federation.
The Minister for Commerce told that the temporary ban on the import of Rice from Pakistan into the Russian Federation has also been lifted from four Companies.
Other rice processing/exporting Companies are also approaching the Department of Plant Protection (DPP) and the Trade Wing in Moscow to start the procedure for virtual inspection, he told.
The minister further told that the Trade Wing Moscow participated in the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) in a number of sessions including SME digitalization, international business & global values, and the post-pandemic consumer market.