ISLAMABAD: Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) President Sheikh Amir Waheed has said that the government should sponsor trade delegations to the African region in an effort to explore new avenues of commerce with the continent.
Fifty-four African countries were a market of over 1 billion people with huge potential for Pakistan to promote trade and exports, said Waheed while addressing the “Look Africa” trade forum.
The ICCI, in collaboration with the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) and Ministry of Commerce, organised the trade forum that was aimed at exploring new avenues of trade and exports to African countries.
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Waheed pointed out that the total trade volume of Africa was around $1 trillion, but Pakistan’s trade with it stood at only $3 billion.
The government should provide incentives to the private sector for organising exhibitions in African countries to introduce more Pakistani products in the region, he said, adding Pakistan had resident missions in only 15 African countries and it should open missions in all major African countries that would help in improving trade and economic relations.
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Ministry of Commerce Joint Secretary Maria Kazi said special incentives would be provided for Pakistani companies through the new strategic trade policy framework for participating in trade fairs in Africa.
TDAP Director Khalid Rasul said the government had planned to increase bilateral trade with Africa from existing $3 billion to $5 billion over the next five years.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 1st, 2018.
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