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KARACHI: A high-level trade delegation from Sri Lanka, led by Sri Lankan Trade Minister Bandula Gunawardhana, will be visiting Pakistan by the end of this month to help explore business opportunities in Pakistan, Consul General of Sri Lanka Jagath Abeywarna announced on Thursday.
“Sri Lankan Trade Minister-led delegation will explore possibility of enhancing trade and investment ties with Pakistani counterparts, besides exploring tourism opportunities available in Pakistan,” he said while exchanging views at a meeting during his visit to the Karachi Chamber of Commerce & Industry (KCCI).
President KCCI Muhammad Idrees, Vice President KCCI Qazi Zahid Hussain, Chairman of KCCI’s Diplomatic Missions & Embassies Liaison Subcommittee Ziaul Arfeen, Former President KCCI Majyd Aziz, Former VP Shamsul Islam Khan and KCCI Managing Committee Members also attended the meeting.
Sri Lankan CG sought KCCI’s cooperation in arranging B2B meetings during the visit of Sri Lankan delegation. “It is going to be a main activity as we haven’t received such a big delegation to Pakistan since long,” he added.
He also advised KCCI to arrange a similar delegation to Sri Lanka as exchange of trade delegations was the only way to improve trade and investment ties.
He was of the view that there was a lot of potential to two-way trade and investment ties between the two friendly countries. “As Pakistan has very strong pharmaceutical and textiles industries, these can be exported to Sri Lanka as we import almost all types of pharmaceutical products and fabrics,” he added.
President KCCI Muhammad Idrees, in his remarks, assured that the Karachi Chamber would warmly welcome and fully facilitate Sri Lankan delegation during their forthcoming visit to Karachi by organizing B2B meetings.
He pointed out that Pakistan and Sri Lanka have been enjoying very cordial relations since many years. “Pakistan was the 2nd largest trading partner of Sri Lanka in South Asia and we hope to become the first largest.”
He noted that during 2020, goods exported by Pakistan to Sri Lanka totaled $324.7 million while goods imported by Pakistan from Sri Lanka were recorded at $78.9 million. “The real trade potential was much higher than what the current statistics reveal and we are determined to unlock this potential through combined efforts and close coordination with Sri Lankan side.”
He urged businessmen and investors to capitalize on the opportunities in the agriculture, textile, tourism, real estate, energy and IT sectors which were attractive investment sectors in both countries. “Moreover, Sri Lanka has good skills to cut, polish and shape gemstones into world class jewelry. Jewelers in Pakistan can avail this opportunity by entering into joint ventures which would enable them to make world class jewelry.