LAHORE - China, the major potential market of Pakistani hand-knotted carpet, would help the carpet industry to enhance its competitiveness and tap the future market of China.

This was stated by Pakistan Carpet Manufacturers and Exporters Association former central chairman Major (r) Akhtar Nazir Khan Cooki while talking to a reception held in honour of a ten member entrepreneurs delegation from the Qinghai Province headed by Mr. Yu Xiao, Director General Qinghai Provincial Commerce Department.

The reception was also attended by the PCMEA Chairman Usman Ghani and senior vice chairman Qamar Zia.

Major (r) Akhtar Nazir Khan Cooki stated that the visiting Chinese delegation had also visited the offices of FPCCI, LCCI, PBIT and Punjab Tourism Department to explore opportunities of joint ventures for encouraging economic activities between the two nations, besides inking a Memorandum of Understanding with the Pakistan Carpet Manufacturers and Exporters Association.

PCMEA Chairman Usman Ghani said that to enable Pakistan to tap the emerging handmade carpet market in China, the delegation has offered research and development assistance to the producers of handmade carpet in Pakistan. While highlighting key business opportunities available in Pakistan, Usman Ghani said there are ample opportunities available which can be put into practice and informed delegates that Pakistani businessmen are specifically interested in joint ventures relating to halal food products, agriculture sector, Rock salt, leather sector, handmade carpet sector, rice and dry fruit etc.

Representatives of Chinese delegation, on this occasion said that they would be delighted to help the Pakistani carpet industry with its up-gradation, and thereby enabling it to tap the Chinese market. They said that China has already laid the foundation for establishment of a business development centre in Pakistan, to extend research and development assistance to the Pakistani industry.

Senior vice chairman Qamar Zia said though Pakistan is also in favour of enhancing mutual trade, still it necessitates some foreign direct investment from China. He said that FDI worth around $ 868 million have flown into Pakistan from China over the past five years, and some $12.8 million have flown in from Hong Kong. During last fiscal itself, around $125.8 million and $ 80.5 million came to Pakistan in FDI from China and Hong Kong, respectively, he said. He added that the trade volume between the two countries is expected to rise to $ 10 billion over the next two years. Last fiscal, trade between the two countries stood at $ 5.72 billion.

The delegation also visited Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry(FPCCI) Lahore office. Chairman and Vice president FPCCI Khawaja Zarar Kaleem welcomed the Chinese delegation. He said, Pakistan and China had good relations. He believed that with exchange of trade delegations the cordial relation between both the Countries would further strengthen the friendship of both the countries. He further said trainings and joint ventures willnot only increase bilateral trade but also support transfer of technology.

On this occasion, Mr. Yu Xiao conversed that their proposed visit to Pakistan is to find out business partners in different sectors like halal food products, agriculture, leather, handmade carpet, rice and dry fruit etc. He invited Chairman and Vice president FPCCI Khawaja Zarar Kaleem in Qinghai Province for two upcoming events going to be held in year 2015, International Halal Food and Products Fair and China (Qinghai) International Carpet Exhibition.