LAHORE - The Chairman, Synthetic & Rayon Textiles Export Promotion Council (SRTEPC), India, Vinod Kumar Ladia, has urged Pakistan and India governments to expedite normalisation of trade relations at a much faster speed as the business communities in the two countries want to play their due role.

Vinod Kumar Ladia was speaking at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Monday. LCCI President Farooq Iftikhar presented Address of Welcome. The Chairman, Synthetic & Rayon Textiles Export Promotion Council (SRTEPC) stressed the need for joint ventures between the two countries as both the sides have a lot to offer to each other in a large number of sectors.

He said that both countries have geographical proximity and regional accumulation and Pakistani businessmen must not look at Indian counterparts as competitors but as collaborators. He said that the businessmen of the two sides should chalk out plans for mutually beneficial cooperation in trade, business and supply arrangements.

He said that as many as 35 leading Indian textile companies are exhibiting their latest range of products that offers Pakistani businessmen a unique opportunity to Pakistan and an ample proof that we are more than willing to take our Pakistani counterparts along.

He said that Pakistan and India have similar business trends in textiles and cooperation in the textiles sector between two countries will create a win-win situation.

He said that Intexpo 2012 has set the stage to develop close linkages between the private sectors representatives of two countries as it has always been a dream of the business community of India and Pakistan to hold a sector specific exhibition in each other’s countries.

Speaking on the occasion, the LCCI President Farooq Iftikhar said that the exhibition has a unique importance and significance because it is being organised at such a time when both the countries are in the process of finalising various things particularly in the context of granting MFN status.

He said that it is needless to mention that textiles is the strongest sector of Pakistan economy which contributes more than 60 percent to the country’s total exports while it contributes approximately 46 percent to the total output produced in the country.

In Asia, Pakistan is the 8th largest exporter of textile products. The contribution of this industry to the total GDP is 8.5 percent and it provides employment to 38 percent of the work force in the country. Moreover, Punjab houses most of the mills related to this sector.

Although raw cotton cultivated in Pakistan and its value-added forms amply meet the demand of the textiles industry but the whole range of synthetic and rayon products are also used at a wider scale.

Considering the scope of development in this sector, it is expected that both countries will benefit out of trade cooperation with each other. We have yet to exploit the potential benefits of regional trade and such interactions will pave the way to lead to that stage.

Farooq Iftikhar said that it is high time that both sides must take full benefit of each other’s strength and put aside all differences that have been hindering way to economic development and prosperity.

The LCCI Senior Vice President Irfan Iqbal Sheikh and Vice President Mian Abuzar Shad said that recent productive developments between two governments will help fortify economic and commercial relations between two countries.

 He said that the Indo-Pak business communities firmly believe that improving economic ties to resolve the larger political issues that obstruct friendly and cordial relations and will bring peace and prosperity in the region. Earlier, the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry and Srtepc inked an MoU for the promotion of mutual relations and dissemination of trade related information.