Islamabad: More than 150 businessmen, including 120 from Malaysia, are converging on the Malaysian capital Tuesday to attend the Pakistan Malaysia Business and Investment Forum being held for the second time in a year, says a press release received here today from Malaysia.
The Forum which comes six months after a similar forum held in Kuala Lumpur drew a crowd of 120 keen businessmen and entrepreneurs from two countries, is being jointly hosted by the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) and the Malaysian Institute of Accountants (MIA) to promote business match making and identify key areas for economic cooperation and joint ventures, especially in textile and clothing, rice, fruits and vegetables, sea food, leather and leather products, and electronics.
Minister for International Trade and Industry (MITI) of Malaysia YB Dato’ Sri Mustapa Mohamed will chair the inaugural session of the Forum to be addressed among others by Mr. Tariq Iqbal Puri, Chairman of Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP), Dato’ Mohammad Nasir Ahmad, President of MIA, and Mr. Masood Khalid, Pakistan’s High Commissioner to Malaysia.
During the visit, the 30-member strong Pakistani delegation headed by the TDAP Chairman will also attend a meeting on Monday of the Malaysian and Pakistani chapters of the Joint Business Council (JBC) set up a year ago to facilitate business networking and joint ventures in a host of sectors offering attractive returns following the implementation of a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Pakistan and Malaysia in 2008.
Deputy Minister for International Trade and Investment of Malaysia, Dato’ Mukhriz Mahathir will also attend and address the JBC meeting as the ‘Guest of Honour’ while Datuk Salim Bin Fateh Din, Chairman Malaysia-Pakistan Business Council, and Mr. Bashir Jan Muhammad, Chairman Pakistan-Malaysia Business Council, will lead deliberations from the two sides.
The Pakistani delegation has also been scheduled to hold a series of one-on-one meetings with key Malaysian government officials and ministers, including Minister of Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Malaysia Datuk Seri Noh Bin Omar, Minister for Plantation, Industries and Commodities, Tan Sri Bernard Dompok, MITI Deputy Minister Dato’ Mukhriz Mahatir and various heads of government and business institutions and trade bodies.
Commenting upon the upcoming Pakistan Malaysia Business and Investment Forum and the JBC meeting, Pakistan High Commissioner Mr. Masood Khalid said around 150 businessmen and captains of industry from both sides had already confirmed their participation in the forum while a 30-member business delegation from Pakistan would also attend the event to explore possibilities for joint ventures in a number of sectors, including Rice, Seafood, Leather and Leather Products, Dairy and Livestock, Surgical and Medical Instruments, Textiles and Garments, Fruits and Vegetables, Pharmaceuticals, Gems and Jewellery, Sports Goods, Housing and Construction, Education and Halal Food.
The High Commissioner hoped a successful organization of the Forum and the JBC meeting would help spur up an already burgeoning bilateral trade which crossed $2.5 billion mark last year, reflecting an upward trajectory in commercial cooperation following the operationalisation of FTA. Pakistan’s exports to Malaysia have also risen considerably in recent months, registering an impressive 56.16 per cent increase, according to trade figures available as of November 2011.
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Haji Ahmed Malik
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