A. Introduction

1. Pakistan was accorded the sectoral dialogue status of ASEAN at the 26th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on 23 July 1993.

2. The inaugural meeting to establish the ASEAN-Pakistan Sectoral Dialogue Relations was held on 5-7 November 1997 in Islamabad. The inaugural meeting agreed that ASEAN-Pakistan Sectoral Dialogue would initially cover cooperation in trade, industry, investment, environment, science and technology, drugs and narcotics, tourism and human resources development.

3. The ASEAN-Pakistan Sectoral Dialogue Relations was institutionalised through the convening of the First Meeting of the ASEAN-Pakistan Joint Sectoral Cooperation Committee (APJSCC) on 5 February 1999 in Bali. The APJSCC has met five times, the second being held on 28 February – 1 March 2001 in Islamabad, the third Meeting on 5-6 June 2006 in Islamabad, the fourth Meeting on 3 June 2008 and the fifth Meeting on 31 May 2011 at the ASEAN Secretariat.

B. Cooperation

4. Pakistan acceded to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia on 2 July 2004 in Jakarta. On the same day Pakistan was also admitted as the 24th participant of the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF).

5. ASEAN and Pakistan signed the Joint Declaration for Cooperation to Combat Terrorism at the sidelines of the 12th ARF on 29 July 2005 in Vientiane.

6. In trade, ASEAN and Pakistan have undertaken a Joint Feasibility Study for an ASEAN-Pakistan Free Trade Agreement (FTA) to enhance and expand the overall ASEAN-Pakistan economic engagement. The Joint Feasibility Study was done by researchers of both sides: the Pakistan Institute of Development Economics (PIDE) and the Malaysian Institute of Economic Research (MIER). At the 41st AEM held in Bangkok, Thailand, on 13-14 August 2009, the Ministers noted the completion of the Joint Study on the Feasibility of the ASEAN-Pakistan Free Trade Area and agreed to defer consideration of the recommendations contained in the study.

7. In 2013, ASEAN’s total trade with Pakistan amounted to US$6.3 billion. ASEAN’s exports to Pakistan recorded at US$5.3 billion while imports by ASEAN recorded at US$1 billion. Foreign Direct Investment to ASEAN from Pakistan in 2013 was US$13 million.

8. On other areas of cooperation, ASEAN and Pakistan have undertaken cooperation in trade, industry and investment, science and technology, drugs and narcotics, environment, tourism, and human resources development.

9. On human resources development, Pakistan offers annual 10 fully-funded scholarships in information technology, banking, engineering and medicine for students from ASEAN Member States. Pakistan has also offered scholarships in an English Language Training Programme for CLMV countries.

10. A number of cooperation projects have been carried out with funding support from the ASEAN-Pakistan Cooperation Fund including the First Meeting of ASEAN-Pakistan Business Council and ASEAN-Pakistan Trade Facilitation Workshop, both held back-to-back on 21-22 February 2000 in Karachi, the Workshop on Industrial and Composite Design Applications on 29-31 October 2002 in Islamabad, the Multimedia Training and Resources Development on 20 November-2 December 2006 in Islamabad, the ASEAN-Pakistan Workshop on Geo-informatics on 10-12 September 2007 in Islamabad, the Pakistan-ASEAN Workshop on Halal Food Production Technology and Certification System on 11-12 March 2009 in Karachi, the ASEAN-Pakistan Free Trade Agreement (FTA) Joint Feasibility Study which was finalised in 2009, and the ASEAN-Pakistan Photo Exhibition on 8-16 March 2011.