SIALKOT - Ministry of Foreign Affairs Japan Director Makoto Matsuda said on Thursday that a Japanese delegation would visit Pakistan in October this year to assess investment opportunities in the country and to enhance bilateral trade.

Addressing the members of Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry, he said the delegation during its stay in Pakistan would visit Islamabad and Sialkot. The delegation in Sialkot would assess the scope of investment as well as business collaboration in different fields with the members of the SCCI, he added. Mr Makoto further said that the delegation would also discuss different aspects of trade and investment with the Pakistani high-ups in Islamabad. He was confident that the visit of the delegation would help boost bilateral trade and pave the way for Japanese investment in Pakistan. He added that on return, the delegation would motivate the Japanese investors and businessmen to invest in Pakistan.

Makoto was of the opinion that though energy and terrorism were the main issues but we consider that Sialkot is much safer as compared to other parts of Pakistan.

In his welcome address, SCCI President Naeem Anwar Qureshi said that the proposed visit of the delegation will surely help pave the way for further improving trade between Pakistan and Japan. Naeem said it was high time for both the countries to focus on broadening the scope of mutual cooperation in the areas of trade and investment, energy, infrastructure development and all other sectors of interest.

“Japan is one of the leading economic powers of the world and important factor of Japan’s success lies in the promotion of small and medium enterprises,” he said. “Majority of companies are small providing employment to approximately 64.5 million people and 30 percent of Japan’s export come from SMEs. There is an urgent need to create more linkages between private sectors of Pakistan and Japan for enhancing trade.”

Naeem also suggested that engagements of the Pakistan chambers and Japan which could lead to exchange of information and trade delegations and holding of joint trade exhibitions, helping promoting bilateral trade.

Yasushi Nakagawa, the deputy director of the Southwest Asian Division Ministry of Foreign Affairs Japan, and Naoaki Kamoshida, the Counsellor and Head of Economic Development section Embassy of Japan, were also present.