LAHORE, November 03, 2021: Cooperation between Pakistan and Kazakhstan would be beneficial for the entire region, a diplomat said.
Speaking at a meeting at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Ambassador of Kazakhstan to Pakistan Yerzhan Kistafin stressed the need for taking steps to enhance the volume of bilateral trade.
LCCI president Mian Nauman Kabir, vice president Haris Ateeq and executive committee members were present on the occasion.
The ambassador said Pakistan was an attractive market for foreign investors, adding that Prime Minister Imran Khan had discussed the prospects of bilateral economic cooperation during the meeting with the Kazakh president in Dushanbe.
The Kazakh president would visit Pakistan next year, he said, adding that Pak-Kazakh Inter-governmental Commission has agreed to establish three working groups on cooperation in economy, energy and regional connectivity. The sessions of the working groups would be convened this month, he added.
“Being a landlocked country, we understand the importance of regional connectivity. Afghanistan can be a beneficiary of trade between Pakistan and Kazakhstan,” the ambassador said. The exchange of television programmes could help get knowledge of each other’s traditions, festivals and cultures.
The ambassador emphasized the need for direct communication between the businessmen and people of the two countries. He also called for reactivating the Kazakhstan and Pakistan Business Council.
The private sectors of the two countries should go for joint ventures in textiles, pharmaceuticals, agriculture, education and other sectors of the economy, the ambassador said, adding that Pakistan could also get access to other countries through Kazakhstan.
Kabir said that the two countries enjoyed strong diplomatic, historical, religious and political linkages. “We need to look for untapped trade potential to become key trading partners. Pakistan can enhance exports in the areas of pharmaceuticals, value-added textiles, leather items, auto parts, ceramics and furniture,” he said.
Haris Ateeq said that more tradable items should be identified, while keeping in view the market demands.
“There is a need to increase people-to-people contact through trade delegations to help business matchmaking and linking potential buyers and suppliers. Both countries need to work for establishing a cost-effective transport system. Rail and road network upgradation under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) can be utilised for this purpose, as China and Kazakhstan share a long border with each other,” he added