SIALKOT-UAE Ambassador in Pakistan Hamad Obaid Ibrahim Salem Al Zaabi Tuesday declared that his country is keen to strengthen bilateral trade ties with Pakistan and all-out efforts will be made to add new dimension to the brotherly relations between the two countries.

"It is need of the hour to boost mutual trade ties and therefore, the UAE is striving to develop the business-to-business and people-to-people contacts between Pakistan and UAE."

The honourable UAE ambassador was addressing an important meeting of exporters during his visit to Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SSCI) here. The SCCI President presided over the meeting. With this visit, Hamad Obaid Ibrahim Salem Al Zaabi became the first-ever UAE Ambassador to have visited the SCCI.

Hamad Obaid Ibrahim Salem Al Zaabi assured that UAE would ensure easy access of Pakistani businessmen and exporters to the international trade markets of UAE. "Sialkot exporters have great potential to explore and capture the UAE markets as there exist lucrative new business vistas in UAE for Pakistani businessmen and investors," he pointed out. The UAE envoy claimed that there are bright opportunities for setting up joint ventures in different trade fields by Pakistani and UAE investors and businessmen.

The UAE Ambassador termed Pakistan as an ideal country for foreign investment, saying that there is no security issue, pledging that the UAE investors will soon visit to Pakistan to explore investment opportunities in different trade fields.

The UAE ambassador also pledged to make all-out sincere efforts to promote the "soft image" of Pakistan globally, saying that the Pakistani and international media should present positive and true picture of Pakistan.

He said that both Pakistan and UAE will work together to tap existing potential for boosting mutual trade ties and develop strong business-to-business contacts between the businessmen of both Pakistan and UAE.

He said that the Pakistani investors would be welcomed in Dubai.

Mr Al Zaabi asked the Sialkot exporters to divert their business activities to UAE and ensure their maximum participation in Dubai Expo 2020 international trade exhibition, saying that 80 countries will participate in this international trade exhibition.

The meeting was told that the UAE has extended generous humanitarian assistance, support for better health and education to Pakistan whenever required. UAE which has become hub of investments, exports, technologies, tourism and renewable energies and large number of Pakistanis are contributing in the UAE's economic phenomenon. In Pakistan, UAE surely has encouraged investment and helps in greater trade and commerce activities. UAE is one of largest investors in Pakistan and people-to-people contacts are constantly on increase.

The volume of current bilateral trade although is satisfactory but strongly in favour of UAE. Dedicated efforts are needed from both sides to further improve two-way trade.

The meeting was briefed that total trade volume between the two countries is around $8.19 billion with balance of trade in favour of UAE at $7.3 billion. The present trade volume is not reflective of our friendly relations and potential available in the two countries. There were immense possibilities and huge potential of joint ventures and cooperation in various sectors, which might be exploited optimally to improve trade. There was also dire need to remove indirect sourcing which were hurting trade between the two countries.

Later, the UAE ambassador also visited several leading industrial units in Sialkot. He witnessed the manufacturing and production processes of the sports goods and surgical instruments. He said that the Sialkot exporters possess great potential to explore and capture international trade markets of UAE by exporting their diversified traditional and non-traditional world class export products.