Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif on Sunday said that the target of increasing bilateral trade volume between Pakistan and Turkiye to $5 billion annually over the next three years was very much achievable. On his Twitter handle, the prime minister referred to his his recent visit to Turkiye where he attended the inauguration of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan who had been re-elected for the third term in office. The prime minister said that in his meetings with heads of leading Turkish business groups yesterday, he highlighted the need for investment and trade in the fields of agriculture, energy, information technology and construction. Exciting opportunities had emerged for collaboration especially after the historic Trade-in-Goods Agreement between Pakistan & Turkiye became operational on May 31 this year, he added. “Was glad to find discernible interest of the Turkish business community in building on the existing partnerships & establishing new ventures,” the prime minister further noted in his tweet. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said the government has taken several steps to take Pakistan on the path to sustainable use of resources. He emphasized the urgent need to combat plastic pollution under the global theme “Beating Plastic Pollution.” In a message on the occasion of World Environment Day, the prime minister emphasized Pakistan’s unwavering commitment to combat plastic pollution and embark on a journey of plastics reduction. As one of the top 10 countries in the world for plastic pollution, with an estimated 70 per cent of plastic waste being improperly disposed of, Pakistan has recognized the urgent need for action. The government has prioritized the adoption of environment-friendly alternatives and is actively working on the Plastics Prohibition Regulation 2023 for Islamabad Capital Territory. This regulation will establish a comprehensive framework and timeline for phasing out single-use plastics, while also leading by example on a plan to reduce and then ban the use of single-use plastics by the entire federal government. In a demonstration of the federal government’s commitment to reducing plastic waste in Pakistan, the prime minister has directed the PM House to stop using single-use plastics, which like the Ministry of Climate Change and Environmental Coordination, will lead the way in phasing out and restricting the use of Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) bottles in Federal Ministries, Divisions across the board. By doing so, the government aims to establish a sustainable and responsible approach to plastic usage and waste management, ensuring the protection of the environment and the well-being of future generations. The prime minister acknowledged that Pakistan has actively participated in crucial international and national level discussions to develop a comprehensive, legally binding instrument aimed at ending plastic pollution, with a target date set for 2024. The government of Pakistan recognizes the significance of ensuring inclusivity and equity within the agreement, emphasizing the need for the treaty to prioritize so that no one is left behind. The prime minister called upon all stakeholders, including citizens, businesses, civil society organizations, and the media, to renew their commitment to the fight against plastic pollution and preserving the planet’s biodiversity for future generations. The prime minister emphasized the importance of empowering local communities, supporting recycling initiatives, and promoting a circular economy that minimizes plastic waste.