Saudi businessmen explore new avenues for joint ventures in Pakistan

LAHORE – A high-level delegation of Saudi business­men and investors visited the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry (LCCI) to explore new avenues for joint ventures and investment opportunities in Pakistan.

LCCI President Mian Nauman Kabir, along with Senior Vice President Mian Rehman Aziz Chan and Vice President Haris Ateeq warmly welcomed the del­egation and presented the address of welcome. Fahad Al Bash was leading the delegation, while Commercial Atta­ché, Embassy of Saudi Arabia Mubsher Alshehry and LCCI Executive Committee Members also spoke. Saudi delegation, having members from construction, in­frastructure, energy, tourism, and phar­maceuticals, also held B2B (business-to-business) meetings with the LCCI members to pave way for new business ventures in various sectors of economy.

Head of the delegation Fahad Al Bash, on the occasion, said that Saudi busi­nessmen aimed to explore trade and investment opportunities in Pakistan. He said there was a huge support from both the governments for the business communities to work and there was a lot of potential in the economies to tap into for both countries. “We are looking for good joint ventures with Pakistani counterparts and hopefully this visit will be very fruitful and result orient­ed,” he added. Fahad Al Bash said that there was a huge potential to increase exports of rice, fruits and vegetables, halal meat, mangoes, pharmaceuticals, and different kinds of marble and gran­ites from Pakistan to Saudi Arabia. LCCI President Mian Nauman Kabir said: “We take Saudi Arabia as the heartland of Islam, the site of two Holy mosques and the focus of Islamic devotion and prayer. It is also an important maritime neighbour of Pakistan. Saudi Arabia is not only the fellow member of Pakistan in Organisation of Islamic Cooperation but we also have excellent close, warm, brotherly, cordial and deep relations.” He said that Saudi Arabia had the larg­est economy in the Arab world and Pak­istan must find ways to further enhance its trade and economic ties.” He said that Saudi Arabia and Pakistan shared a special bond with each other. It also houses the largest number of Pakistanis as expatriates. “Above all, Saudi Arabia has always stood beside Pakistan in dif­ficult times. To thank for all that we are really short of words,” he said.

A high-level delegation of Saudi businessmen and investors visits LCCI

The LCCI President said that Saudi counterparts belonged to various key sectors of economy that include renew­able energy, real estate, pharmaceutical, logistics, agriculture, food processing, edible oil, tourism, oil & gas etc. “We are quite glad to know that Saudi delegates are interested to interact with Pakistani counterparts to find prospective busi­ness partners,” he asserted. He said that Lahore Chamber would certainly like to play its role in match making with the bonafide member companies and in this regard exchange of trade del­egations was one of the most effective ways of enhancing trade. He said that in 2021, the imports of Pakistan from Saudi Arabia stood at 3.78 billion dol­lars while our exports to Saudi Arabia were around 404 million dollars. Pre­vious year, the volume of exports was 432 million and it must be enhanced on war footing basis to minimize the on­going gap of mutual trade deficit. The major exports of Pakistan to Saudi Ara­bia include rice, meat, spices, bed linen, tents, men’s wear, footwear, woven fab­rics and fresh fruits etc, whereas the imports from Saudi Arabia are mainly related to petroleum oils. “I expect that this visit of Saudi delegation to Pakistan will add new trading lines particularly for enhancing Pakistan’s exports”, he added. Mian Nauman Kabir said that they have to identify areas of joint ven­tures. Pakistan has trained manpower and sufficient land for industrial as well as agricultural projects. There can be a win-win situation for both the coun­tries if Saudi investors team up with our local industrialists. LCCI Senior Vice President Mian Rehman Aziz Chan said that Saudi Arabia has been important trading partner of Pakistan since long. It comes at 5th place and 14th place among the top importing and export­ing countries for Pakistan, respectively, across the globe. “It is a source of en­couragement for us to learn — that you have a special place for Pakistan in your heart — and you desire to expand and promote trade between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia through developing busi­ness networking.” “We believe that Is­lamic countries should assist each other for attaining economic benefits. Since the Headquarter of OIC is in Jeddah, so, we would like you to please play some supporting role to expedite the efforts — aimed at engaging the economic, politi­cal and social elements of Islamic coun­tries”, Mian Rehman Aziz Chan added.

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