India Expo aims to strengthen bilateral trade

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KARACHI: A single country three-day India Expo has been inaugurated on Friday with the hope of removal of trade barriers and elimination of negative list to strengthen bilateral trade between Pakistan and India.

The exhibition was inaugurated by Siraj Kassam Teli, chairman of the Businessmen Group and former president of the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry, which was organised by the KCCI in collaboration with the Federation of Indian Export Organizations (FIEO).


Teli said that the exchange of business delegations would help flourish trade between the two countries.


“It is time for the trade industry of the two countries to take lead and change the way of working of bureaucracy,” he said.


There are apprehensions about the negative impact on Pakistan’s industry in case of opening trade with India, he said, adding that those should not fear because it would provide more trade opportunities.


It is just the beginning and “still lot of business is to be done”.


M Rafeeque Ahmed, president of FIEO, said that Pakistan is one of the important members of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) region. Looking at the bilateral trade, he said: “It does not commensurate to the existing potential between the two countries.”


Trade between the two countries is around $2 billion in 2011 and the balance of trade is in favour of India as it exported goods worth $1.5 billion, while the rest is Pakistan’s share.

“However, with the recent high level official visits taking place, trade is expected to touch around $6 billion by 2015,” he added.


Ahmed, who is head of delegation of 65-member Indian businessmen, said that granting the most favoured nation (MFN) status and liberalisation of business visa would further provide impetus to the bilateral trade between the two countries. “The exhibition is a step forward to further strengthen economic relations,” he added.


Haroon Agar, president of the KCCI, in his address of welcome said that the business community should avail of the opportunity during the expo for business-to-business meetings.


This is the third event in a row being organised by the KCCI with its Indian counterparts in December, he said.


Tariq Huda, director general of the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP), said that it is a matter of satisfaction that private sector of the two countries is taking lead in increasing bilateral trade.


The KCCI and FIEO also signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for cooperation in enhancing bilateral trade.


At the exhibition hall at the Expo Centre Karachi, around 35 stalls are showcasing Indian products, including diesel engine, generators, auto-parts, hand tools, roofing sheets, solar energy and electrical products, plants and equipment for industrial gases, textile, fashion jewellery, footwear, agro, spices, dairy and food products, leather chemicals and pharmaceuticals, stationery, PVC flex banners, holograms, etc.


The Indian exhibitors are confident about the positive outcome of the recent progress made in the official level talks. They said that the trade will increase as the two countries have similar language, tradition and culture.



Courtesy:  The News

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