Iranian Government has pledged $330 million through Friends of Democratic Pakistan: Sherani

Karachi, July 14, 2012 (PPI-OT): Pak-Iran relations are deeply rooted in the history and heritage, common culture and shared traditions. Geographical proximity linking their security interests, gives added depth and meaning to bilateral ties stated by Haji Fazal Kadir Khan Sherani, President, Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) while talking to visiting Iranian Consul General at Federation House Karachi. Mr. Abbas Ali Abdollahi, Consul General of Iran visits FPCCI on Friday, 13th July, 2012 to share bilateral relations between the two countries.

Haji Fazal Kadir Khan Sherani said that Pakistan and Iran have always maintained a close cooperative relationship. Both countries are amongst the founding members of ECO and OIC. The Iranian Government has pledge US $ 330 million through the Friends of Democratic Pakistan (FoDP) Initiative.

Pakistan and Iran have implemented PTA in2006; however, the current volume of bilateral trade between the two countries is not reflective of the true potentials of the two countries. Current volume of bilateral trade is US $ 265 million approximately during 2011.

Pakistan’s exports to Iran during the same period are US $ 136 million while imports are US $ 129 million. New items in present PTA should be included and increase extent of concession on some items already in the PTA. Both countries should enhance trade promotion activities under the existing Preferential Trade Agreement.

Haji Fazal Kadir Khan Sherani also emphasized the harmonization between the rules and regulations of the two countries required to determine the balanced strategies regarding trade cooperation. He further added that Iran-Pakistan Gas Pipeline between energy deficient Pakistan and energy rich Iran is a feasible and doable project. Visa for businessmen on the recommendation of Chambers should be issued immediately and also established separate counter for business visa also proposed by the President FPCCI.

Mr. Abbas Ali Abdollahi, Consul General of Iran said that Iran and Pakistan can increase trade up to 10 billion dollar. He said that Iran trades with a large numbers of countries but Iran wants to improve its bilateral trade relations with Pakistan. Pakistani textiles products reached Iran via third country it should be export to Iran directly.

Due to financial and banking sector sanctions on Iran has reduced our trade drastically. Earlier Pakistan and Iran have agreed to barter trade in rice, wheat, meat and fruit, vegetable, oil and iron ores. He also informed that our consul offices are issuing multiple visa of six month to Pakistani businessmen. He also suggested that these two countries should start trading in their local currencies instead of any other currency.

Sheikh Shakeel Ahmad Dhingra, Vice President FPCCI, also attended the meeting and stated that currently trade is badly suffering due to smuggling. Smuggled products from Iran are available even in Karachi. Both countries take measures and discourage smuggling.

For the promotion of trade, single country exhibition, and exchange of delegations were proposed during the meeting. It was also informed that a delegation from Iran headed by Mr.Yaha Ale Ishaq, President, Tehran Chambers of Commerce, Industry and Mines will visit Pakistan in September this year.

The meeting was also attended by Syed Masood Alam Rizvi, Secretary General, FPCCI Mir Nasir Abbas, Director General (IA), FPCCI and Ahmad Zaman Khan, Director (EA),FPCCI and others.

Meeting concluded with the presentation of FPCCI crest to Mr. Abbas Ali Abdollahi, Consul General of Iran.

For more information, contact:
Syed Masood Alam Rizvi
Secretary General
Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI)
B-1, Federation House, Main Clifton Road,
Karachi-75600, Pakistan
Tel: 0092-21-35873691, 93-94
Fax: +9221 3587 4332