Sharafat Kazmi Islamabad
Ambassador of Azerbaijan in Pakistan, Khazar Farhadov has said that the State Oil Company of the Republic of Azerbaijan (SOCAR) intended to invest USD 1 billion in Pakistan’s energy sector while many other companies were interested for JVs and investment in Pakistan as they consider Pakistan a potential market for business and investment activities.
While interacting with business community during his visit to Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) on Monday, he said that the leadership of Azerbaijan and Pakistan have the will to upscale the economic cooperation and both countries should focus on promoting direct connectivity between their private sectors to enhance bilateral trade relations.
He said that his embassy was ready to arrange virtual meetings between the companies of both countries that could be followed up with exchange of trade delegations.
Khazar Farhadov said that Azerbaijan has signed agreements with EU and other countries and Pakistan’s close economic cooperation with it would provide Pakistani products easy market access to Central Asia and Europe.
He said that Pakistan and Azerbaijan were working on a preferential trade agreement that would lower customs tariffs and improve bilateral trade between the two countries.
He said that Pakistani companies including pharma units have good potential to set up production plants in Azerbaijan.
He said that Azerbaijan was establishing a free economic zone next to the port of Baku and Pakistani investors should explore JVs and investment in this facility.
Speaking at the occasion, President ICCI Muhammad Shakeel Munir said that the bilateral trade of around US$ 16-17 million between Pakistan and Azerbaijan was quite less than the actual potential of both countries and stressed that more efforts should be made from both sides to improve it.