LAHORE     -    Eight-member Turkish business delegation on Friday visited the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry and expressed interest in joint ventures in various fields with their Pakistani counterparts. Head of the Turkish delegation Dr Ali Cihan Kurt, LCCI President Almas Hyder, Vice President Faheem-ur-Rehman Saigal, former President Bashir A Baksh, former Senior Vice President Amjad Ali Jawa and Naeem Hanif discussed bilateral trade.

Dr Ali Cihan Kurt said that Turkish businessmen were ready to initiate joint ventures with their Pakistani counterparts in a number of sectors including construction and energy. He said that Turkey for being second fastest growing economy of the world after China and first in the European Union has a lot to offer to their Pakistani counterparts and they should avail the opportunities. He called for exchange of business delegations so that both the sides could have firsthand knowledge of the available opportunities in Pakistan and Turkey. Almas Hyder said that Pakistan and Turkey were bonded together by old historical and religious relations. “Both the countries are members of OIC & ECO, and mostly share common views on world issues”, he said, adding, both the countries were steady trading partners. Among the global importing and exporting destinations of Pakistan, Turkey comes at 31st and 17th places respectively.

“It is encouraging to see that there is increasing trend in bilateral trade. For instance, in 2016 the volume of bilateral trade was dollar 497 million which surged to dollar 596 million and 661 million in next two years”, he said, adding, the balance of trade has traditionally been in favour of Pakistan but in 2018, the imports from Turkey (dollar 358 million) exceeded the total exports (dollar 303 million) to Turkey.