Bangladeshi HC dissatisfied over limited trade, stresses exchange of trade delegations

September 13, 2015 Off By Web Desk

KARACHI: Suhrab Hosain, High Commissioner of Bangladesh, while expressing dissatisfaction over limited trade volume of less than $1 billion between Pakistan and Bangladesh, stressed the need to exchange trade delegations, enhance people-to-people and institutional linkages between the two countries which would help in improving the existing meagre trade volume.

Exchanging views with KCCI President and Managing Committee members during his visit to KCCI on Monday, the Bangladeshi High Commissioner also expressed concern over trade imbalance between the two countries.

Deputy High Commissioner of Bangladesh in Karachi, Noor-e-Helal Saifur Rahman, President KCCI Iftikhar Ahmed Vohra, Former President KCCI, Majyd Aziz, Chairman Diplomatic Affairs Sub-Committee Naeem Sharif, Former SVP KCCI, Zia Ahmed Khan, Former Vice President Nasir Mehmood and KCCI Managing Committee members were also present at the meeting.

Suhrab Hosain further said that although many Pakistani businessmen and industrialists have been individually visiting Bangladesh for business purposes from time to time but collective efforts by Karachi Chamber and the Chambers of Commerce in Bangladesh were needed in order to improve trade between the two countries. He said that Bangladesh considers ‘Pakistan as not only a friend but also a brother’.

Referring to a particular suggestion pertaining to direct shipping line between Karachi and Chittagong to facilitate trade which was floated by him during his last visit to Karachi Chamber in 2011, Suhrab Hosain asked President KCCI to look in to this matter as it was the business community’s job to raise voice for such facilities whereas ‘we work as catalyst’.

Identifying various sectors in which trade could be enhanced between the two countries, Bangladeshi High Commissioner particularly mentioned pharmaceutical, IT, telecom, agro-based industries and heavy engineering products etc. in which both countries could enhance trade.

He noted that Bangladesh has been producing sufficient energy of 13,000 megawatts, its GDP growth was above 6 percent and it also holds strong foreign reserves of $26 billion. “Our Readymade garment sector is ranked 2nd in the world which employs 3.4 million young women”, he added.

Earlier, while welcoming the High Commissioner of Bangladesh, President KCCI Iftikhar Ahmed Vohra said that Pakistan and Bangladesh must forget the bitterness of the past and look forward towards closer friendly and brotherly relations. “We need to strive hard to improve the stature of people inhabiting in both countries”, he added.

He also stressed the need to organize frequent exchange of trade delegations and holding single country exhibition in both countries which would help in bringing the business communities of the two countries closer.

Iftikhar Vohra invited the Bangladeshi business community to invest, look for possibilities of enhancing trade or undertake joint ventures with their counterparts in Pakistan which would ensure progress and prosperity for the entire region.

“We have been focusing on strengthening relations and trade ties with regional countries including Bangladesh as we strongly believe that peace and prosperity in this region can only be attained through collective efforts”, he added.

Iftikhar Vohra pointed out that Pakistan and Bangladesh share strong bonds of religion and cultural ties. Pakistani investors have invested billions of dollars in Bangladesh’s garment, leather and textile sectors in the last few years giving way to healthy economic relations between the two regional countries.

He also sought High Commissioner’s assistance in encouraging the business community of Bangladesh to participate in Karachi Chamber’s My Karachi – Oasis of Harmony Exhibition which would provide a perfect platform to display their products and services in front of almost a million visitors who visit the three day long exhibition.