LAHORE - Ambassador of Vietnam Pham Hoang Kim has stressed the need for frequent exchange of delegations for enhancing trade volume between the two countries. Speaking at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry on Monday, he suggested business forums of two countries to focus this particular area for exploring each other’s market. LCCI Vice President Mian Zahid Jawaid Ahmad, Executive Committee members Fiaz Haider, Malik Khalid Gujjar, Yasir Khursheed, Haji Asif Sehar, Haris Attique, Sheikh Sajjad Afzal and Ch Khadim Hussain and former EC member Rehmatullah Javed were also present. The Ambassador said that there should be interaction between chambers of commerce of both countries. Pakistan and Vietnam have strong diplomatic relations. He said that entrepreneurs from both sides should have B2B meetings to strengthen mutual trade relations. About getting business visas of Vietnam, the envoy said that there must be an invitation or immigration proposal from Vietnam. He said that the LCCI and the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce & Industry should join hands to arrange trade delegations and promote business activities. Mian Zahid Jawaid Ahmad highlighted investment opportunities in Pakistan under CPEC in Special Economic Zones. “It is encouraging to note that in the span of 10 years, Vietnam has become important trading partner of Pakistan.

Among the major importing and exporting countries for Pakistan, Vietnam comes at 27th and 18th places”, he said and added that the balance of trade was in favour of Vietnam whereas in 2018 the value of trade deficit stood at dollar 69 million. From 2017 to 2018, the bilateral trade came down from dollar 717 million to dollar 633 million. It was due to 24% decrease in imports from Vietnam. However, Pakistan’s exports remained almost unchanged at dollar 282 million.

“Pakistan exports to Vietnam comprise frozen fish, woven fabrics of cotton, oilcake, leather oil seeds and frozen meat whereas the imports from Vietnam are electrical equipment including wireless networks, dried vegetables, tea, man-made filaments and frozen seafood”, he said. He said that regular exchange of trade related information between two countries could prove vital in enhancing trade volume to initially 1 billion dollar.

“Respective commercial sections of missions have got to play key role in this connection. In addition to that the respective private sectors of both the countries should also come forward. By exchanging trade delegations and organizing single country exhibitions, we can explore the hidden trade potential”, he said.

He said that the economic development achieved by Vietnam in last 10 year was a perfect case study for Pakistan. In 2009, the volume of total trade of Vietnam was to the tune of dollar 127 billion that expanded to dollar 480 billion in 2018.

“We are keen to know about the economic policies implemented by Vietnam that produced such a wonderful result”, he said.