LAHORE - There is an urgent need of the start of a direct shipping line between Karachi and Chitagong, which will take five to 10 days against 25 to 30 days at present due to indirect shipping lines between the two countries.

This was stated by Chairman APTMA SM Tanveer while talking to High Commissioner of Bangladesh to Pakistan Sohrab Hussain during his visit to APTMA on Monday.

SM Tanveer also underscored the need of resolving banking issues, as the LC payment gets clear in 125 days against the standard period of 90 days. He said Pakistan’s total exports to Bangladesh stood at $718 million in 2013-14, out of which the textile exports were recorded at $709 million. The share of cotton cloth and cotton yarn is higher among all textile sector products to Bangladesh, which was recorded at $454 million and $117 million respectively in 2013-14, he added.

He said export of raw material from Bangladesh plays vital role for garment industry of Bangladesh, which requires more cooperation on the front of bilateral trade relations.

According to Chairman APTMA, the level of bilateral trade and investment can be improved by enhancing knowledge sharing, exchange of information at the institutional level, frequent exchange of information with counterpart organisations and adopting measures to increase bilateral trade and investment missions besides sharing of technical know how based on comparative advantages.

Speaking on the occasion, group leader APTMA Gohar Ejaz termed the visit of High Commission of Bangladesh to Pakistan as opening up of a new vista of opportunities for both countries.

He stressed upon the need for exploration of Business to Business relations between the two countries.

The visiting Bangladesh envoy appreciated the proposals put forward by the Chairman APTMA and assured of resolving the stumbling blocks in smooth trade ties between two South Asian textile countries.

He also assured of dealing with visa issuing hassles on priority and expressed the hope that and enhanced bilateral trade relations between the two sides would be beneficial to both countries.

He also shared the steps taken up by his government in maximising the opportunity of GSP plus. He further said that against perception, Bangladesh had supposed GSP plus facility for Pakistan in actual.  He also appreciated the ideas relating to trade and investment ties between Pakistan and Bangladesh.