LAHORE: A sector-specific trade delegation of Egypt will visit Pakistan from May 2 to explore avenues of trade and investment, announced Egypt Ambassador Ahmed Fadel Yacoub.
"Egypt wants to do business with Pakistan," the ambassador remarked while sharing his views with Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) President Almas Hyder on Friday.
He stressed that brotherly and historic relations between the two countries ought to be reflected in trade as both countries had immense potential in the area.
Highlighting that Egypt currently imported rice from Dubai, Yacoub expressed the desire to import the staple crop from Pakistan in the future. He also termed Pakistan a big market for Egyptian businessmen.
"Annual bilateral trade does not exceed $200 million and hence it does not reflect true potential of both the nations," he regretted. "Egypt is a country with a strong and flourishing economy."
The ambassador told the LCCI president that Pakistani businessmen who desired to do business with Egypt would receive extra benefits.
Stressing that Egypt aimed to encourage trade contracts and joint ventures, he said the country would prioritise imports from Pakistan.
Yacoub also invited Pakistani businessmen to visit Egypt and explore trade and investment avenues. "Improvement in the legal framework to protect the business will also help boost trade and economic ties," he added.
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Speaking on the occasion, Hyder disclosed that the LCCI was planning to take a delegation to Africa in a bid to establish new business contacts.
Citing figures, Hyder pointed out that Egypt ranked 40 and 39 respectively among top import and export destinations for Pakistan. The total size of bilateral trade fell from $231 million in 2017 to $208 million in 2018.
"Pakistan, being an agricultural economy, can supply both semi-processed and processed food to Egypt," Hyder pointed out.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 30th, 2019.
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