Lahore, February 20, 2018 (PPI-OT): Pakistan needs to show strong presence in huge African market to take full advantage of its infinite potential. African destination not only has precious reserves of oil and gold but various other sectors have a lot to offer Pakistan. These views were expressed by the diplomats from Africa.
High Commissioner of Kenya Professor Julius Kibet Bitok, High Commissioner of Nigeria General (Retd) Ashimiyu Adebayo Olaniyi, Ambassador of Sudan Tageldin Elhadi Eltahir, Ambassador of Somali Khadija Mohammed Al-Makhzoumi and High Commissioner of Mauritius Rasid Ally Soobadar while speaking at “Look Africa Trade Forum” joint organized by the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry and TDAP. The LCCI President Malik Tahir Javaid, DG TDAP Riaz Ahmad, Sohail Lashari, Zafar Mahmood, Amjad Ali Jawa, Executive Committee Members and Joint Secretary Ministry of Commerce Maria Qazi spoke on the occasion.
Diplomats said that Pakistan’s trade with Africa is minor that should be enhanced. They said that establishment of new commercial sections in Africa can help in this regard. They said that Pakistani pharmaceutical, textile, agriculture, rice, wheat and cement have a lot of scope in African market.
The LCCI President Malik Tahir Javaid said that Pakistani products can easily make way to Africa which is world’s second-largest and second-most populous continent. He said that the trade analysis of last two years shows that overall trade of Pakistan with different African countries is following decreasing trend as both imports and exports are falling. From 2015 to 2016, the value of overall trade decreased from dollar 3.23 billion to dollar 2.91 billion on account of 15.7% fall in exports and 4.7% fall in imports from Africa.
He said Pakistan needs to make concerted efforts to reverse this trend. It can be made possible with efforts done by private sector coupled with some assistance provided by the respective embassies of African group and relevant public organizations of our country. He said we have been emphasizing on product and market diversification. Pakistani business community should be made aware of it that there are incalculable market opportunities available in Africa. Look Africa Trade Forum can serve as a good source for networking.
Malik Tahir Javaid said that African countries can greatly benefit from Pakistan’s experience and expertise in the fields of infrastructure development, agriculture, auto-parts, light engineering, pharmaceuticals, banking and information technology. Pakistan’s education sector, particularly professional institutes can provide excellent opportunities and venues to the students belonging to the African countries to learn modern sciences and arts.
He said the specific role of embassies cannot be ignored at all in this connection. With the help of influence and unique importance of embassies, things can be turned towards a certain direction for ensuring mutual benefits. Similarly, when CPEC gets fully functional, it will also cut down transit time and transportation charges to send exports via sea route to Africa.
For more information, contact:
Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI)
Lahore -54000, Pakistan