Pakistan France Economic and Political Relations

(Dr.Mehboob Syed, Karachi)

Pakistan and France have very close and friendly relations and there has been remarkable positive developments in these ties in recent years and let us pledge to further cement, enhance and strengthen these ties. Both countries are striving for global peace, stability, elimination of extremism, terrorism, bigotry, bias and hatred and striving to promote cooperation, understanding and tolerance. Both countries extended their cooperation in number of fields including trade, energy, education, defence, culture, archaeology etc. In 2017, bilateral trade between France and Pakistan stood Euro 1.4 billion which is quite less than its potential. There are 32 French companies mainly major groups are represented in Pakistan in key sectors of Pakistan like energy, transport, public work, civil engineering, environment, pharmaceuticals, and consumer goods, non -banking services etc. Over 185 French companies are members of the Pakistan France Alliance. France cooperation with Pakistan is implemented through two instruments: bilateral cooperation and The Afghan Francaise Development (AFD). Bilateral aid in cooperation and cultural action has two main targets: Supporting the Pakistan government’s academic policy and consolidating France influence in the field of culture, language, social sciences, governance and archaeology. France academic cooperation focuses on students at Master’s, doctorate or post doctorate level, either in the frame work of Pakistan government grants or for students in international mobility. The Pakistan France Alumni Network is a key asset, fostering the influence and visibility of the embassy’s activities. France scientific and technological cooperation is also aimed at supporting joint projects led by French and Pakistan research laboratories (Peridot Hubert Curien partnerships, launched in September, 2014).

Pakistan France Trade Statistics US$ million
year exports Imports Total Trade Balance of trade Total exports of Pakistan % share in total exports Total import of Pakistan % share in total imports
2014 923.2 576.5 1,499.7 346.8 25,109.6 3.7 45,070 1.3
2015 819.7 428.4 1,248.0 391.3 23,667 3.5 45,820 0.9
2016 859.7 615.7 1,475.3 244.0 20,786 4.1 44,684 1.4
2017 970.9 607.6 1,578.5 363.2 20,422 4.8 52,910 1.1
2018 1,033.2 470.7 1,503.9 562.5 23,222 4.4 608,67 0.8
Source: TDAP, PBS

Pakistan and France are doing trade in limited items and there is need to focus on diversification of trade to achieve better results. Instead of relying on textile products, Pakistan should focus on value added agro –food products, medical appliances, dairy products, and others to further enhance its exports to France and other EU countries. Energy items, turbines for hydro power, pharmaceuticals, agriculture, energy, water and helicopter are other potential areas of mutual cooperation. Many Pakistani products like gloves of all sorts, textile items, sportswear, uniforms and accessories and military uniform badges could be items of attraction for French market.

About France
France is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, and from the Rhine to the Atlantic Oceans. It is bordered with Belgium, Luxemburg and Germany to the north east, Switzerland and Italy to the east, With a combine area of 643,801 square kilometers and a total population of 67.3 million. Its capital is Paris, the country’s largest city and main cultural center.

France has been a global center of art, culture, science and philosophy. It hosts the fourth largest number of UNESCO world’s heritage sites, and is the leading tourist destination receiving around 83 million visitors annually. France is the world’s developed country with the world’s 8th largest economy nominal GDP, and 10th largest by purchasing power parity. France performs excellent in international ranking in education, healthcare, life expectancy and human development. France is considered great power in global affairs, being one of the five permanent members of the United Nations Organization’s Security Council with the power to veto and is an official nuclear state. It is a leading and active member if European Union and the Eurozone, and the number of the group of 7, North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) , Organization for Economic Cooperation Development ( OECD) , The World Trade Organization (WTO) and La Franchophonie.

Emmanuel Macron is its president serving since 2017. Eduard Charles Philippe is its Prime Minister since 15 May, 2007. France is founding member of United Nations and serves as one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council. In 2015 France was described as the best network state in the world , because it is country that is member of more multilateral organizations than any other country , France is member of GB, WTO, Indian Ocean Commission(COI). It is a leading member of International Francophone Organization (OIF) of 48 countries fully or partially French speaking countries. As a significant hub for International relations including the OECD, UNESCO, Interpol, and the International Bureau of weight and Measurements.

Economy of France
France is ranked as the world’s 10th largest and the EU’s second largest economy by purchasing power parity. France is world’s sixth largest exporter and is a member if the Eurozone (around 330 million consumes) which is the part of European single market. France represents 20% of the EU’s agricultural production and the world’s third biggest exporter of agricultural products. About 84 million foreign tourist visit which is the largest tourist visit in the world ahead of United Nations (67 million) China (58 million). The most popular tourists’ sites are Eifel Tower (6.2 million) Chateau Versailles (2.8 million) Museum A national d, Histoire Naturelle (2 million) France, especially Paris, has some of the largest and most renowned museums, including Louvre. Sophia Arti Polis is the major technology hub for the economy of France. With 28 of the 500 biggest companies of the world in 2018, France ranks 5th in the Fortune Global 500, behind the USA, China, Japan and Germany. Several French corporations rank amongst the largest in their industries and Air France is in air transportation. Luxury and consumer goods are particularly relevant, with L Oreal being the world’s largest cosmetic company while LVMH and PPR are the world’s largest luxury product companies. In energy and utilities GDF Suez and EDF are amongst the largest energy companies in the world. Carrefour is the world’s second largest retail group in terms of revenue

Economic Indicators
GDP (Purchasing power parity) : $ 2.856 trillion
GDP (Official exchange rate) : $ 2.58 trillion
GDP (per capita) : $44,100
Industries : Machinery, chemicals,
Automobiles, metallurgy, aircraft
Electronics, textiles, food
Processing, tourism
Exports : $ 549.9 billion

Export Partners : Germany 14.8%, Spain 7.7%, Italy
7.5%, USA 7.2%, Belgium 7% UK
Export Commodities : machinery and transportation
Equipment, aircraft, plastics,
Chemicals, pharmaceuticals
Imports : $ 601.7 billion
Import commodities : machinery and equipment,
Vehicles, crude oil, aircraft plastic

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