Tremendous potential to increase Pak-Canada trade volume: Commerce Minister

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Muhammad Arshad

Islamabad

The Federal Minister for Commerce and Textile, Mohammad Pervaiz Malik, Tuesday, said that there was tremendous potential for increasing the bilateral trade volume between Pakistan and Canada.
Pakistan’s major exports to the Canada include rice, made up articles of textiles material, articles of apparel and major imports from Canada are grain oil seeds and pulses, vegetable preparations machinery and its parts, pharmaceutical products, oil-seed and chemicals.
He further said that Trade between Pakistan and Canada stood at US $0.91 billion during the FY 2016-17 and Canada-Pakistan Joint Working Group on Trade and Investment was working on exploring ways to promote bilateral trade.
In a meeting with Canadian High Commissioner Perry John Calderwood, Minister sthanked him for the letter of facilitation and invitation to visit Canada, extended by Francois-Philippe Champagne, Canadian Commerce Minister.
He also shared his intention to visit Canada soon to discuss ways and means to bolster the already cordial trade relations between the two countries. He also asked Canadian side to come up with their recommendations on proposal to conduct a Joint Study for promotion of bilateral trade.
The Commerce Minister informed the Canadian High Commissioner that the Department of Plant Protection (DPP) and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) agreed to adopt mutually agreed scientific solution to the problem of fumigation of Canadian Exports to Pakistan to ensure food safety standards and said that with the support of CFIA the DPP has completed technical and legal evaluation of the information provided by CFIA and now await invitation from CFIA to DPP experts for on-the-spot inspection of integrated measures employed in Canada to ascertain export of quarantine free cargo to Pakistan.
The Minister further said that the Security Situation in Pakistan has significantly improved & economic and social indicators are on the rise in Pakistan and Pakistan offers a lucrative market for investment.
Canadian High Commissioner, Perry John Calderwood congratulated Mohammad Pervaiz Malik on becoming the Commerce Minister and said that there has been a substantial improvement in the security situation in Pakistan and Pakistan is also taking major steps for ease of doing business which makes the Pakistani market very lucrative for Canadian businesses and investors.
He informed the commerce minister that Canada has already made significant investment in Solar Energy Projects in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Baluchistan. He said that there has been a solid foundation of Pakistan and Canada trade relations and now a sustained effort is needed to build on that foundation and increase the bilateral trade. He also expressed need to bring the Pakistani and Canadian businesses together so that they get understanding of businesses in both countries and explore new investment opportunities.
Later on, Kyrgyz Ambassador Erik Beishembiev, called on the Federal Minister for Commerce and Textile Mohammad Pervaiz Malik and asked the commerce minister for the support of Pakistan in activation of Trade and Economic Council between the chambers of the two countries and providing training to Kyrgyz officers on GSP Plus.
The Commerce minister welcomed the Kyrgyz ambassador to the ministry and assured him of full support and facilitation. The minister also promised to speed up the work on activation of Trade and Economic Council.

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