Kazakh envoy calls for raising trade to $500m

Suggests railway link between Pakistan and Kazakhstan

Our Correspondent October 11, 2018
Suggests railway link between Pakistan and Kazakhstan. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and Kazakhstan have great potential to enhance cooperation in many fields and if both countries facilitate their private sectors, the annual bilateral trade volume could surge from the current level of below $25 million to $250-500 million.

This was stated by Kazakhstan Ambassador Barlybay Sadykov during his visit to the Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI). Sadykov pointed out that many Pakistani products including fruits, vegetables, pharmaceuticals, surgical instruments and leather goods had a great potential in Kazakhstan.

“Pakistani exporters should step up efforts to enhance exports of these products to the Kazakhstan market,” he emphasised. “Kazakhstan is adopting ‘Strategy 2050’ to become the 20th most advanced country in the world.”

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For that matter, it is offering good opportunities to Pakistani companies for joint ventures and investment in various sectors of Kazakhstan’s economy.

The envoy suggested that a railway link, built between Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Iran, could be extended to Pakistan to promote bilateral trade and people-to-people contact. “The leadership of both countries has agreed on a roadmap; promoting trade is the key component of this roadmap,” he said.

He shared Kazakh embassy’s plan of organising a conference in Pakistan, in a month or two, to highlight the business and investment potential in the Central Asian state.

Sadykov emphasised that the ICCI should join hands with his embassy in organising that event. “ICCI should identify the trade barriers and inform the Kazakh embassy so that these can be dismantled,” he stressed. “I would work closely with the ICCI for the promotion of bilateral trade and economic relations between the two countries.”

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Speaking on the occasion, ICCI President Ahmed Hassan Moughal said Kazakhstan was rich in natural resources including oil, gas, gold and coal and Pakistan would like to strengthen its cooperation.

“Both countries should focus on establishing air, road and railway links in order to boost two-way trade,” he suggested. “Regular exchange of trade delegations and holding single-country exhibitions on a reciprocal basis is necessary to identify new areas of mutual cooperation.”

Published in The Express Tribune, October 11th, 2018.

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