LAHORE- Faisalabad Industrial Estate Development and Management Company (FIEDMC) Chairman Mian Kashif Ashfaq Saturday said the government is working on multiple fronts to enter into new markets in order to boost exports in post-Brexit scenario and leading trade organisations and Pakistani entrepreneurs both in Britain and Pakistan see this as an exciting time for the Pak-UK trade and economic partnership to be taken to a new level.
He expressed these views while talking to delegation of UK-based investors during leg of FIEDMC tour to Europe and these foreign investors are keen to invest in Allama Iqbal Industrial City, a prioritized Special Economic Zone of FIEDMC under CPEC.
“To fully capitalise on these opportunities, British firms would like to see further progress in reducing corporate tax rates, data privacy and ease of doing business indicators. If these steps are taken, and the UK maintains an active strategy for engagement and interaction with the Pakistani economy at all levels, it will remain a significant partner in Pakistan’s future growth story,” he pointed out.
He further said that “the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and Brexit are two important developments, and as the global economic gravity shifts towards Asia, Pakistan is opening new vistas of business opportunities to the advantage of the people in both countries.
Mian Kashif said the United Kingdom is the third largest investor in Pakistan after China and the Netherlands and accounts for 8% of foreign direct investment to Pakistan, also the UK has overtaken China and now is Pakistan’s 2nd largest export market after the US and also the largest market in the Europe”.
“The annual bilateral trade between the United Kingdom and Pakistan has gone up to 2.9 billion just in the last year it has seen a 10% increase in it and annually now Pakistan is exporting 1.8 billion of goods and services to the UK,” he added.
Mian Kashif said Pakistan is keen to expand and diversify its export base and is already competitive in products such as textiles, garments, surgical instruments, steel, and sporting goods and Under China’s Belt and Road Initiative, the China-Pakistan economic corridor (CPEC) is a collection of modern infrastructure projects including roads, rails and power plants for improving geographical connectivity in the region which may complement to Britishers business community.
Accordingly, the FIEDMC Chairman shared that European countries are keen to invest in various economic sectors of Pakistan in order to avail business opportunities in the country. He said projects, like FIEDMC’s industrial estates, have the potential to enhance the country’s exports by 1 to $1.5 Billion per annum in the short run with a comprehensive and effectively designed strategy specifically tailored to meet Pakistan’s exporting shortcomings.–Handout