KARACHI - Ambassador of Kingdom of the Netherlands, Marcel de Vink has stressed that it is the right time for Pakistani business community to diversify their exports to European Union and seek new opportunities in order to fully benefit from EU’s GSP Plus scheme with zero tariff barriers.

Talking to the office bearers and Managing Committee members of the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) during his visit to the chamber on Saturday, the ambassador said that trade volume between the two countries stood at $800 million. “I will be striving to ensure that the existing trade volume reaches $1 billion during my stay in Pakistan as the Netherlands Ambassador”, he added.

President KCCI Abdullah Zaki, Vice President KCCI Muhammad Idrees, Chairman of KCCI’s Diplomatic Affairs Sub-Committee Abdul Jabbar Dalal, Chairman and others were also present at the meeting whereas the Netherlands Ambassador was also accompanied by the Honorary Consul General of Kingdom of the Netherlands in Karachi, Tarek M. Khan and Commercial Officer, Peter A. Felix.

Ambassador De Vink further said that efforts were being made to encourage Dutch companies to invest in Pakistan. “We would like to do more for Pakistan and encourage people to see for themselves what Pakistan offers”, he said, adding that Pakistan needs to focus on effectively dealing with some of the serious challenges being faced by the country today, particularly the law and order situation, economic instability and the negative perception about Pakistan. “Bad news coming out of Pakistan along with economic instability scares people away”, De Vink said.  A delegation from the agriculture sector of the Netherlands, which will be headed by the Vice Minister of the Netherlands, will soon be arriving in Pakistan to explore Pakistan’s trade potential and investment opportunities available in the agriculture sector of Pakistan.

Earlier, while welcoming the Ambassador of Kingdom of the Netherlands, President KCCI Abdullah Zaki briefed him about KCCI’s functioning and its vibrant role in promoting trade ties with many countries around the world.