Last update: Tue, 09 Feb 2016 06pm

Exporters urged to explore markets in Libya

Ambassador of Pakistan in Libya and Malta, Lieutenant General Javed Zia (retired), with a view to promoting Pakistani products and strengthening trade ties between Pakistan and Libya, has offered to set up a free display centre in Pakistan Embassy in Libya. Speaking at a meeting during his visit to the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) on Thursday, he extended his full co-operation to businessmen in enhancing trade relations between the two countries.

He was of the view that Pakistani exporters with their little efforts could dominate in Libya's developing markets. Highlighting the importance of Libya, Zia said that the country despite passing through a crisis, still possessed strong foreign reserves of $120 billion with a stable Libyan Dinar.

He said that Libya is the 9th largest oil producing country in the world and, as such, Pakistani exporters should explore opportunities in various sectors such as construction, surgical and sports goods, textile, rice, mango pulp, leather, marble, wheat, cement, furniture, jewellery. He also underscored the need for sending Pakistan's skilled labour force to Libya.

"We must put our act together and need to boldly address issues hindering trade between the two countries and Libya is looking forward to enhance its imports from Pakistan, but unfortunately Pakistan has not paid any attention and is looking at other destinations for enhancing its exports," he opined. He said that Pakistani Embassy in Libya followed an open-door policy and it always encouraged Pakistanis to visit and look for business and investment opportunities in Libya.

Referring to the Libyan crisis, he said that Pakistani embassy in Libya had repatriated 7,040 Pakistanis who were stranded in Libya following an evacuation operation was launched by Libyan government on August 13, 2014. Terming the evacuation as one of the biggest and successful operations, the envoy said that it was made possible due to Pakistan government's timely response and financial help as over Rs 400 million were incurred on the entire evacuation process.

He said that Pakistan's embassy in Libya has also started the registration process of Pakistani expatriates in Libya and around 4,000 Pakistanis have been registered, so far. He said that three Pakistanis schools have also been established in Libya where high quality education was being imparted to students.

President KCCI Iftikhar Ahmed Vohra said that Libya, being an emerging economy, offered immense opportunities to Pakistani business community to export various products and services. He said that Pakistan and Libya enjoyed better ties with each other as they share common religious identity, cultural links and Islamic heritage. He underscored the need for making efforts to increase the trade volume. Speaking on the occasion, KCCI senior vice president, Muhammad Ibrahim Kasumbi, stressed the need for having close liaison between the business communities of both the countries.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015