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General

Pakistan trade body suggests setting up joint chamber of commerce with Iran

Islamabad Pakistan's Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) has suggested establishment of Pakistan-Iran joint chamber of commerce and industry to boost trade, local media reported on Thursday.

The proposal was presented by SCCI President Maqsood Anwar Pervaiz in a meeting with Iranian Consul General Mohammad Bagher Beigi in south western city of Peshawar.

Islamabad and Tehran should relax their policies, revise the tariffs and make joint efforts to remove potential bottlenecks coming in the way of bilateral trade, the SCCI chief said.

Iranian Deputy Consul General Ebrahim Dehandi and members of the business community were also present in the meeting.

Pervaiz said bilateral trade volume between Pakistan and Iran stood at less than $1 billion, which had potential to further increase if non-tariff barriers were removed, duties reduced, exchange of business delegations ensured, joint business ventures launched and policies revised.

He said the sister ports of Gwadar and Chabahar could play vital role in enhancing Pakistan-Iran trade. He also invited the Iranian businessmen to invest in potential sectors in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

Both the countries enjoy cordial relations due to their common religion, customs and traditions, Pervaiz said, stressing the need for promoting formal and organised trade.

The SCCI chief termed the Pakistan-Iran gas pipeline project a milestone initiative between the two countries, which would ensure supply of 1000MW electricity to Pakistan, thus ushering a new era of industrialization, economic prosperity and development.

On the occasion, Iranian Consul General Mohammad Bagher Beigi said lack of banking channels between Iran and Pakistan was the major hurdle to boost the bilateral trade. He said both the countries had committed to enhancing the mutual trade, but satisfactory steps were yet to be taken in that regard.

The Iranian consul general said the two countries would soon fulfill their joint commitments to strengthen the mutual trade. He said Iran and Pakistan had potential to enhance bilateral trade up to $5 billion.

He asked the Pakistani investors, especially from KP, to take full advantage of the incentive given by his country to foreign investors.

He said Iran joint economic commission was working to review the tariffs with Pakistan.

Source: Islamic Republic News Agency - IRNA


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