ISLAMABAD, Sept 6 /DNA/ – Khazar Farhadov, Ambassador of Azerbaijan lauded Muhammad Shakeel Munir, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry for taking a business delegation to Azerbaijan through the first direct launched between Islamabad and Baku and this becoming a pioneer of this initiative as the visit was very successful in improving business linkages between the private sectors of both countries. He said that a delegation of the Export and Investment Promotion Agency of the Republic of Azerbaijan (AZPROMO) was expected to visit Pakistan to conduct market research and explore opportunities for promoting trade relations between Pakistan and Azerbaijan. He said this while interacting with the business community during his visit to Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI).
The envoy said that Azerbaijan and Pakistan were enjoying cordial relations and strengthening economic cooperation should be the key focus of both countries to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes. He said that close cooperation of Pakistan with Azerbaijan would open up avenues for Pakistan to improve trade with Central Asian countries. He shared the proposal of setting up a joint working group that would listen to the issues and hurdles being faced by the business community in promoting bilateral trade and propose measures to address them for further increasing bilateral ties between Azerbaijan and Pakistan. He said that both countries have good potential to enhance cooperation in many sectors including banking, IT, energy, tourism, agriculture and SMEs. He assured that the Embassy of Azerbaijan would provide all possible facilitation to the business community of Pakistan in promoting trade with his country.
Speaking at the occasion, Muhammad Shakeel Munir, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry said that the existing level of bilateral trade between Pakistan and Azerbaijan was quite low given the actual potential of both countries and stressed that strong efforts from both sides were needed to improve it. He welcomed the news of the expected visit of the AZPROMO delegation to Pakistan and stressed for regular exchange of trade delegations to explore all untapped areas of mutual cooperation between Pakistan and Azerbaijan. He said that Pakistan was producing high quality marble products and establishing a marble warehouse in Baku was important to increase exports of marble products to Azerbaijan. He said that many Pakistani products including pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, surgical instruments, sports goods, cutlery, electrical appliances, textile & leather products, furniture, home-made crafts, food and fruits products, engineering & consumer goods and rice could find a good market in Azerbaijan and emphasized that Azerbaijan should import these products from Pakistan.
ICCI Executive Members Engr. Azhar ul Islam Zafar, Ch. Muhammad Ali, Humayun Kabir, Faseeh Ullah Khan, Ch. Javed Iqbal, Akhtar Hussain and others also spoke at the occasion and offered useful proposals to further increase bilateral trade and economic relations between Pakistan and Azerbaijan.