LAHORE - A number of Chinese furniture manufacturers and investors have expressed keen interest in three-day 10th mega exhibition ‘Interiors Pakistan 2018’, which will start on December 14 at Expo Center here in the city. In a message received here from Shanghai China here on Thursday, Chief Executive Pakistan Furniture Council (PFC) Mian Kashif Ashfaq said that there was a vast scope for further enhancement of bilateral trade between Pakistan and China in furniture sector and private sector of two countries can establish joint ventures in the neglected areas for investment. He said PFC visit to China along with Prime Minister Imran Khan’s entourage was a big success and their interactions with their counterparts would be proved fruitful in coming days as both sides agreed to cooperate with each other for holding joint mega furniture exhibitions not only in respective countries but also in different other countries.

He said the Chinese furniture makers and investors praised the quality of Pakistani furniture with calligraphic engravings and admitted the fact that furniture items produced in Pakistan have great demand in international markets. They offered huge trade opportunities to Pakistani business community in furniture sector and invited Pak counterparts to visit China to tap all untapped areas of promoting trade and exports.

Mian Kashif said the purpose of their visit to China was to share experiences and exchange views with local business community and explore new opportunities of matchmakings with their counterparts. He said many Chinese investors were expected to set up industrial units in Pakistan under CPEC and they should give preference to local people in jobs that would help in reducing unemployment and poverty from the country.

He further said that both the countries share a border and have a collective population of more than 1.5 billion, but the trade activity between the two countries still needs a boost. Talking about Pakistani furniture, he expressed that China may have a better market for high-quality furniture goods produced in Pakistan.

He said that Pakistan exports furniture products of worth $8 million to $12 million annually, but these figures do not mirror the actual potential of the industry and its capacity to produce high-quality furniture items.

He said our exporters should actively take part in international shows and furniture exhibitions to ostentatiously present Pakistan’s ability to produce jaw-dropping furniture items.

He said that Pakistan was providing easy access to Chinese companies in its market and China should reciprocate similar facility to Pakistani business community besides this, China should also bring technology and set up industrial units in Pakistan.

Mian Kashif said Pakistani industry is rife with anticipation for various opportunities and ideas that the PFC will offer. He said that the PFC was on a mission and wanted to educate people about the value of owning fine hand-crafted furniture.