May 232015

LAHORE: The British government is committed to a long-term, productive and friendly partnership with Pakistan, said United Kingdom House of Lords Member Baroness Nosheena Mobarik.

Speaking at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry, she said that UK viewed Pakistan as a long-term strategic partner and would continue to support all its endeavours aimed at expanding trade relations between the two countries.

“British businessmen admire Pakistan”s labour force because of their intelligence and hard work, which is one of the greatest strengths of Pakistan,” she remarked.

LCCI President Ijaz A Mumtaz, on the occasion, called for concrete steps to enhance diversified strategic partnership.

“Volume of total two-way trade can easily break the barrier of $2 billion if some avenues of trade are exploited with joint efforts,” Mumtaz added.

“We do need technical help and guidance from UK to make the most of our available agriculture resources and also develop much required linkages, while British investors need to explore the untapped potential of our mines and mineral development sector.”

A four-member delegation of British High Commission, led by Head of External Affairs Team Gareth Roberts, also visited the LCCI.

Talking to the delegation, LCCI Standing Committee on Pak-India Trade Chairman Aftab Ahmad Vohra said promotion of Pak-India trade was not only in the interests of both countries but could also ensure peace and prosperity in the region.  He said that the non-tariff barriers faced by Pakistani exporters were creating enormous problems. “At present, almost equal quantum of trade is going on between Pakistan and India from third destinations like Dubai and Colombo.”

Published in The Express Tribune, May 24th, 2015.

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