Belgian food festival was sumptuous, envoy calls for greater cooperation

Salahuddin Haider

Karachi—The Belgian ambassador in Islamabad Frederic Verheyden, who was in Karachi Tuesday, said his country’s Capital, Brussels, was not only headquarter of European Union, but was also a centre of peace talks on Afghanistan. It had already hosted a summit, in which Pakistan also pledged $500 million for peace in its neighbourhood.
He said Pakistan and Belgium had very good relations and few years ago a delegation of senior diplomats visited Belgium.
Such visits should be frequent. He said his country was interested in investment in Energy, Food processing and chemical products. It wanted to play a meaningful role, and agreed with the Pakistan slogan of trade not aid. He paid tributes to the Pakistani people.
Welcoming Verheyden the President of the Pakistan-Belgium Business Forum (PBBF) Mohammad Rajpar recalled that the Forum was established in 1997, with 55 enterprises as its members.
The occasion, a dinner turned out to be a mini food festival for Belgium. The huge gathering invited to the dinner, was served with Belgian food, which included salmon, chocolate and ice cream. It was an enjoyable lavish dinner.
He said until last year, trade balance between the two countries was in Pakistan’s favour. Pak exports to European country were $380m, while imports were $319m.
He said a Belgian trade delegation was in Pakistan earlier, and another one is expected next year. He also said the two countries were linked in a warm relationship — economic and cultural.

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