ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and Bahrain here on Wednesday signed 15 Memorandum of Understanding (MoUs) and two agreements aiming at boosting bilateral trade and investment relations in different sectors.
These MoUs and agreements were inked at the conclusion of a day-long Pakistan-Bahrain Business Forum which was jointly organized by the Ministry of Industries and Commerce Bahrain in collaboration with Ministry of Commerce Government of Pakistan and Board of Investment.
Representatives of different private companies and higher officials of the both governments inked the MoUs and agreements on behalf of their respective sides.
Speaking on the occasion, Minister for Commerce, Engineer Khurram Dastgir Khan invited the business community of Bahrain to take maximum benefits from the trade and business opportunities existed in different sectors of the national economy in Pakistan.
The visit of the King of Bahrain at on an appropriate time when Pakistan was emerging economically and politically as vibrant and stable state, he added.
He extended the fullest supports of his ministry for the investors of Bahrain and stressed the need for further enhancing business to business links between both the countries.
Khurram Dastgir also offered joint ventures in textile sectors for fully harnessing the Free Trade Agreements signed by the Bahrain with US as well as providing opportunities for Pakistan to getting benefits from the GSP Plus facility granted to Pakistan by the EU.
The Minister urged the Bahrain business community to exploit investment opportunities in the power generation and alternative energy sectors in the country.
Speaking on the occasion, Chairman Board of Investment, Miftah Ismail said that Pakistan has about 180 billion tons of coal reserves worth US$ 9,000 billion but unfortunately mining sector was just contributing 2 percent in national GDP.
He said that Pakistan was going to initiate work on 20-25 thousand MW electricity generation projects, construction of motor-ways and urged the Bahrain to take advantage from these investment opportunities for their own benefit and for the benefit of the people of Pakistan.
He told the forum that Pakistan offers 17 percent returns on the investments in alternative energy resources including solar and wind sectors and the business community from Bahrain can benefit from this opportunity.
Speaking in the forum, Minister for Industries and Commerce Bahrain, Dr. Hassan .A. Fakhro informed that current volume of trade between Bahrain and Pakistan stood at only US$ 400 million which would be further increased during the days to come.
He said that his country has the largest financial market in the region and Pakistan could take benefits from the market adding that Bahrain could also help in infrastructure development in Pakistan.
The Minister sought Pakistani investment in red meet, poultry, rice, fresh vegetables and textile sectors as huge market and demand exists for Pakistani products in that market.
He also appreciated the role of overseas Pakistanis working in Bahrain and their value able contribution in different sectors of the economy for the development and prosperity of his country.
President Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industries informed the Bahraini businessmen that about 700 foreign companies were operating in Pakistan and earning huge profit.
He also called for close cooperation between the private sector of the two countries.