By Shabbir Hussain
ISLAMABAD, Nov 19 (Diplomatic Star): Turkiye and Pakistan enjoy heart-to-heart relations and Turkiye is keen to boost bilateral trade with Pakistan at least up to US$ 5 billion in the next 2-3 years as the current volume of trade is not reflective of the actual potential of both countries.
This was said by Dr.Mehmet Pacaci, Ambassador of Turkiye while addressing the business community during his visit to Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI).
Nurettin Demir, Commercial Counsellor of Turkiye was also present at the occasion, said a press release issued here.
The envoy said that he was assigned by his government to increase Turkiye-Pakistan bilateral trade to US$ 5 billion in 3 years as a first step and added that both countries have the potential to go beyond this target.
He said that Turkiye wants to enhance cooperation with Pakistan in trade, industry, investment, education, health and other fields.
He said that the entrepreneurs of both countries should know each other more and work hard to expand trade and economic relations while he assured that his Embassy would fully cooperate in such efforts.
Nurettin Demir, Commercial Counsellor of Turkiye gave a detailed presentation at the occasion about investment opportunities in Turkiye.
Speaking at the occasion, Ahsan Zafar Bakhtawari, President, ICCI said that despite enjoying exemplary cordial relations. Pak-Turkiye bilateral trade is just around US$ 1.2 billion and stressed that both countries should promote strong business linkages between their private sectors to improve trade volume.
He said that Turkiye can invest in a number of sectors in Pakistan including engineering, chemicals, housing & construction, electrical appliances, machinery, defence, irrigation, food processing, halal meat, agricultural productivity and solar energy.
He said that ICCI is organizing in partnership with the Ministry of Housing & Works the first International Housing Expo on Dec: 8 to 11, 2022 and invited the investors of Turkiye to actively participate in this mega event and introduce their projects in Pakistan.
He said that both countries are part of ECO and D8 Economies and they should take advantage of these platforms to further strengthen their trade ties.
Khalid Iqbal Malik Group Leader said that Turkiye is a strong economy of the Muslim world with a GDP of around US$ 800 billion and it should focus on promoting trade and economic relations with Pakistan that would be more beneficial for both countries.
Zafar Bakhtawari, former President ICCI said that Turkish airlines have flights to over 129 countries and it should connect Pakistan with Central Asia and D8 countries.
Road and railway links with Turkey should be upgraded and PTA should be converted into FTA to improve bilateral trade.
He further said that Pakistan-Turkey-Azerbaijan free trade market should be established. Faad Waheed Senior Vice President ICCI, Zubair Ahmed Malik, Muhammad Ejaz Abbasi, Maqsood Tabish, Raja Imtiaz, Muhammad Shabbir and others were also present at the occasion