Business Community’s Role Vital To Bridge Trade Deficit Between Pakistan Malaysia: Nafees Zakaria

FAISALABAD, (APP):Muhammad designated High Commissioner to said on Friday that Pakistani should play pivotal and proactive role to bridge trade deficit between the two countries.

Addressing the meeting at Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FCCI), he said that Malaysia was a small country with total population of about 30 million but every year 26 million tourists visit the country which was quite enough number to create demand of Pakistani goods of different kinds. Mr. Zakaria said that he would try his optimum to bring business community of two countries closer to each other so that they could launch joint ventures for value addition which would also generate much needed economic activities in Pakistan.

He said that he was also contemplating to set up a ‘Display Centre’ for Pakistani products in addition to establish a Cultural Centre in Malaysia to cement people to people contacts. He requested the President FCCI to identify specific products of textile chain, enabling him to pave way for its exports to Malaysian markets. He said that although Malaysia was itself a small market but through this brotherly Islamic country, we could have access to a big market of ASEAN.

However, for this purpose, the government as well as business community would have to make concerted efforts with a strong commitment of patriotism. He said that 20 percent of Malaysian population belongs to Buddhists community. Pakistan has many religious sites for this Buddhists community but during last few years not even a single Buddhist visited Pakistan. He said that he would also try to exploit this important aspect of Pakistan to promote religious tourism for the Baddish community.

He said that he had planned to organize an exhibition of Pakistani products in April next year in Malaysia in collaboration with LCCI. He invited the FCCI to join this initiative to market the Pakistan related products of Faisalabad. He further said that Malaysian government had ratified an agricultural agreement which would also help us to export agricultural products to Malaysian markets.

However, Pakistani exporters must examine this agreement to explore new potential market of Malaysian for the export of agriculture products from Pakistan. He said that Pakistan had potential to export fish and fish preparations but it was irony of fact that we failed to tap this potential. Regarding exchange of trade delegations, he said that he could immediately arrange video conferences for Pakistani exporters with Malaysian importers so that they could negotiate and decide to launch joint ventures or make import and export deals.

He said that Malaysian educational institutes were also ranked the best in the region while there fee was comparatively lesser than European countries. He said that Pakistani students should avail from this opportunity. He assured that he would also try to convince Malaysian government to offer sufficient number of scholarships for Pakistani students, aspiring to study in Malaysia. He further said that approximately 100,000 workers were employed in Malaysia.

There is still room to export human resource to this country and he will certain focus on this aspect also, he added. He asked the President FCCI to share any market study conducted by FCCI so that he could further fine tune it to make room for Pakistani exports in Malaysian markets. In his welcome address, Shabbir Hussain Chawla, President Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry said that the volume of bilateral trade between Pakistan and Malaysia was only 944.632 million dollars.

Pakistan is importing different items including palm oil from Malaysia worth 792.886 million dollar whereas its exports are at only 151.346 million dollars. Thus the balance of trade is in favor of Malaysia, he added. He stressed the need for attracting Malaysian investment particularly in food processing industry. Later, FCCI shield was also presented to the designated High Commissioner to Malaysia Mr. Muhammad Nafees Zakaria.

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