Deputy Governor of Namangn Region, Uzbekistan and head of Uzbek delegation Inamov Okibjon Odiljonovich Saturday invited Pakistani businesspeople to visit his country and benefit from the opportunities through joint ventures with their Uzbek counterparts.
He was talking to business community here at Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry, where LCCI President Mian Tariq Misbah and Vice President Tahir Manzoor Chaudhry also spoke.
The deputy governor said that Uzbekistan was keen to enhance trade relations with Pakistan, as both countries had great potential to cooperate with each other in many areas of economy.
He identified pharmaceutical, tourism, agriculture, food processing, automobile, construction, chemicals, oil & gas, mining and electrical & electronics as other potential areas of mutual cooperation.
He invited the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry to form a sector-specific delegation for Uzbekistan.
He said that role of LCCI holds importance for B2B (business to business) contacts between the two countries.
He lauded the hospitality of Pakistan saying that visit of the great country was a right decision.
LCCI President Mian Tariq Misbah informed the delegation that the LCCI was the premier business support organisation of Pakistan with a diverse membership base that exceeds 29,000. Whenever the foreign trade missions visit Pakistan, they also visit the LCCI.
He hoped that the visit of government officials and private sector representatives from Namangan Region, that is the eastern part of Uzbekistan, will initiate a new era of close cooperation between two countries.
He said that the Government of Uzbekistan deserves appreciation for sending this high profile delegation to Pakistan in continuation of a virtual summit held between Prime Minister Imran Khan and President Shavkat Mirziyoyev in April this year.
During this summit, multiple MoUs [memorandums of understanding] were signed and both countries agreed to reinforce ties in a number of sectors.
The LCCI president shared the bilateral trade figures that are on rise. He said that in 2018, the volume of two way trade was around $20.7 million which went up to $28 million dollars in 2019 due to rapid increase in Pakistan’s exports to Uzbekistan. That trend continued and in 2020, the bilateral trade reached $34.3 million.
He said that during the last three years, Pakistan’s imports from Uzbekistan increased from $3.3 million to $9.1 million whereas Pakistan exports to Uzbekistan went up from $17.4 million to $25.2 million.
There is a great potential for both countries to enhance trade and economic relations through joint ventures in textiles, pharmaceuticals, construction, renewable energy, tourism and automotive parts.
Mian Tariq Misbah said that absence of banking Channel, difficulties in land route and communication are some of the major bottlenecks behind low trade volume. —APP