LAHORE  - Ambassador of Germany D. Cyrill Nunn has said that Germany intended to strengthen mutual trade relations with Pakistan and would make all-out efforts to ensure access for exporters to the European Union (EU) and German markets.

Expressing the optimism, he said that perception of insecurity in Pakistan due to terrorism is now changing not only in Germany but also in the whole Europe, saying that Pakistan is safe country having huge potential of foreign investment.

He was speaking to the members of Pakistan Readymade Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association at PRGMEA North Zone office. Among others, PRGMEA north zone Senior Vice Chairman Jawwad Ch, former chairmen Ijaz Khokhar and Sajid Saleem Minhas also spoke on the occasion. Dr Cyrill Nunn said that there would be investments in Pakistan by different companies of Germany as they had shown keen interest in this regard, especially in the energy sector.  He ensured PRGMEA members of expediting visa processing for the business community in Pakistan.  He said that German government will help Pakistan in implementing its five year Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Reform Support Programme to train 100,000 people. Pakistan needs highly skilled and trained manpower to maximize its benefit from GSP Plus status and TVET will help to a great extent in this regard, he added.

“On behalf of the German government, the German enterprise Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) in cooperation with National Vocational and Technical Education Commission (NAVTEC) will finance projects to implement National Skills Strategy of government of Pakistan.” The funds will be spent on vocational education projects in Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan, Federally Administered tribal areas, Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Gilgit Baltistan, he added.

The visiting envoy said that Pakistan government has revised its growth rate from 3.6% to over 5% for 2013-14, which may be taken as first indicator of GSP plus facility. He added that jump in textile orders to Pakistan suggest that the European buyers want to take advantage of the GSP plus facility to Pakistan. Earlier, in his welcome address, PRGMEA SVC Jawwad Ch said that the business community was grateful to Germany for supporting Pakistan with regard to GSP plus status. He said that PRGMEA is the premier trade organization representing the Readymade Garment Industry in Pakistan.  On this occasion, Jawwad Ch also sought technical assistance for upcoming innovative textile products/fabric. Training could be provided in shape of master trainers of garments, he added.