SIALKOT-Ambassador of France in Pakistan Mr Marc Barety has said that his country was very keen to develop strong business contacts with Pakistan, and also focusing on the promotion of the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Pakistan.

Talking to the exporters at Sialkot, he said that his country would explore opportunities for the transfer of advanced technology to Pakistan. He added that B2B contacts could help boost mutual trade ties between Pakistan and France. He said that France was ready to make strenuous efforts for the purpose.

The French ambassador added that his country was very keen to boost trade ties with Pakistan. He pledged to make efforts to remove all the hurdles from the trade promotion. Addressing a meeting at Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), he said that the time was high to do more for advancing bilateral ties.

he said Pakistani business community should ensure maximum exports to France and other European Union countries through France by taking the full advantage of GSP Plus status. He said that the Pakistani businessmen would be most welcomed in France.

He invited Sialkot exporters to divert their business activities to France. He said that the Sialkot exporters were much aware of the international standards. They also have the great potential to explore and capture the international trade markets of France and EU countries through France, he said.

He assured Sialkot exporters their easy access to French trade markets and even the EU trade markets through France. He also asked the Sialkot exporters to participate in the international trade fairs and exhibitions to be held in France.

He also stressed a need for making some effective joint efforts to boost mutual trade between Pakistan and France. He vowed to make an all-out effort to boost trade ties between Pakistan and France, saying that the time was ripe to further strengthen these mutual trade ties.

The French ambassador showed keen interest in SCCI's business development-oriented documentary "Sialkot the City of Progressive People" screened out during the important meeting held at SCCI.

The SCCI President presided over the meeting. While other senior officials of the French Embassy and Chairperson SCCI's Women Entrepreneurs Committee Dr Maryam Nouman also attended the meeting. He said that Sialkot exporters had great potential to explore and capture the international trade markets by exporting their traditional and non-traditional export products.

For improving bilateral trade, he suggested that exchange of trade delegations and meetings of businessmen of both the sides. He said that Pakistan-made sports goods, surgical instruments, leather products, gloves of all sorts, textiles items, sports wear, martial arts uniforms & accessories, musical instruments, kitchen ware, hollow ware, knives, cutlery items and military uniform badges etc could find a good market in France.

He said Pakistan and France have always enjoyed cordial relations on the basis of mutual trust. France has always been a close partner of Pakistan in terms of bilateral trade and socio economic development.

He said that Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) and the Embassy of France in Pakistan would have a mutually beneficial relationship. "We believe that today's meeting would lead us towards ome practical steps in building relationship in areas of common interest. Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) is greatly contributing to the economic uplift and development of the country. We are also actively pursuing the global economic agenda by adopting the best practices compatible to the International standards and in this respect, we are also an avid supporter of Free Trade and Economy," he added.

The French ambassador said that France could be a gateway for Pakistan to the European Markets. He hoped that GSP Plus status to Pakistan would be helpful in enhancing the Pakistani exports to France and other European countries.