LAHORE: Pakistani textile products, pharmaceuticals, rice, fruits, surgical goods, sports goods have a huge potential market in Republic of South Africa. Pakistani businessmen should avail these business and trade opportunities.
This was stated by High Commissioner-designate to Republic of South Africa Najm us Saqib while speaking at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry. LCCI Vice President Kashif Anwar presented welcome address while former LCCI President Mian Muzaffar Ali, Executive Committee Members Mian Zahid Javaid, Khawaja Khawar Rashid, former Vice President Saeeda Nazar also spoke on the occasion.
Ambassador-designate said that both Pakistan and Republic of South Africa have very strong credentials to give new strengths to their respective economies but lack of information about each other’s potentials is hurdle in the way and there is a need to bridge this gap.
The Ambassador said that the Health and handicrafts sectors also have bright prospects for trade between the two countries. The High Commissioner, who spent well over an hour at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said that the Pakistani High Commission in Republic of South Africa would extend all possible support for single country exhibition and for exchange of business delegations.
Speaking on the occasion, the LCCI Vice President Kashif Anwar stressed the need for further strengthening of Chamber-High Commission liaison. He said that Pakistani businesses were specifically eyeing the prospects of transfer of technology. Likewise, opportunities exist in cooperation between the various other sectors in Pakistan in the form of joint ventures.
The LCCI Vice President also called for devising ways to update the information crucial for trade and investment. He said that bilateral relations between Pakistan and RSA witnessed accelerated growth.
He said that Pakistani business community regards bolstering economic ties with South African economy on a long-term basis as an important step. For that matter, there have also been exchanges of business delegations in the past.
Pakistan and Republic of South Africa need to further develop bilateral trade which ranges between $ 600-650 million as presently it is far below than our trade potential. He said that there was a need to identify the reasons behind low level of trade and also work on ways to improve economic relations, trade and investment.
Pakistan’s exports to RSA include cements, bed & table linens, woven fabric of synthetic staple & cotton fabrics, leather & leather garments and electro medical apparatus etc.
The imports from RSA comprise coal, ferrous waste & scrap, flat rolled products of iron, aviation related goods, synthetic tanning substances, unwrought aluminium and food preparations etc.
Though the trade balance favours Republic of South Africa but we are keen to explore and address the bottlenecks which are causing constraints to trade promotion. Your commercial section can help us to a great extent in this regard.
According to ITC Trade Data base for the year 2012 only 1.1% of Pakistan’s exports make their way to Republic of South Africa. While in total imports of Pakistan, South Africa’s share is just 0.7%. These figures further signify that there is a lot of room to multiply the trade figures.