LAHORE: High Commissioner of Bangladesh Rahul Alam Siddique has said that the both countries should take maximum steps to strengthen their relations in all economic sectors. He was speaking at a meeting at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) here on Saturday.
Honorary Consul General of Bangladesh Humayun Fareed also spoke on the occasion.
High Commissioner of Bangladesh said that intensive market research, frequent visits of trade delegations, exchange of socio-cultural programs and close contact between trade bodies of the two countries can lift the existing trade level between the two countries. He said that jute and tea is the major item being exported to Pakistan. Both the countries should identify new areas for cooperation. He said that the exports of Bangladesh to China are being increased gradually. He said that at present all industries in Bangladesh are open and fully functional.
He said Jute and tea are the major exports of Bangladesh. There is great demand for jute products because of the ban on plastic and other materials. He said that major exporting countries for Bangladesh are China, European Union and USA. He said that China allowed special preferences to Bangladesh as many Chinese companies are doing business in Bangladesh. We support the export industry by providing them subsidies on raw materials, tax/duty etc.
The High Commissioner said that due to the Corona pandemic our growth was declining but now we are improving day by day through vaccination and it is available for every person. Moreover there is no restriction on getting visa business and family visas are available but the visa obtaining procedures are lengthy. He lauded the role of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry in promoting trade and economic activities.
LCCI President Mian Tariq Misbah said that after India, both Pakistan and Bangladesh happen to be major members of SAARC in terms of the size of their economies and it should be our prime objective to effectively utilize this platform. The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) should play its role to enhance regional trade that is low as compare to the other economic blocks.
The LCCI President said that in order to establish productive commercial relations, there is a need to address all the issues including non-trade barriers. “For this purpose, efforts need to be employed to facilitate frequent interaction between the business sectors of the two countries Business delegations composed of sector-specific participants or product-specific groups of entrepreneurs should be organized regularly by the leading chambers of commerce from both sides,” he added.
Mian Tariq Misbah said CPEC is a framework of broad regional connectivity. He said that CPEC will not only benefit China and Pakistan but will have positive impact on Iran, Afghanistan, India, Central Asian Republic, and the whole region. Bangladesh can also take advantage out of it by investing in the Special Economic Zones that are being developed under the CPEC, he added.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021