Business community urged to foster trade connections with Indonesia & ASEAN.

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Rawalpindi: The business community of Pakistani should participate in the upcoming “1st Pakistan – ASEAN Trade Development Conference & Pakistan Single Country Exhibition” in Jakarta, Indonesia and interact with the business community of Indonesia and ASEAN for establishing active trade connections and linkages. This was stated by the Ambassador of Indonesia to Pakistan Mr. Adam Tugio during the meeting with the President of Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce & Industry (RCCI) Mr. Saqib Rafiq, President RCCI and others senior members at the RCCI office. He congratulated the newly elected RCCI office bearers and expressed his keen interest to increase the trade turnover between the two brotherly countries.

Talking about bilateral trade opportunities, Ambassador Tugio said that Indonesia strongly desires enhanced economic relationship with Pakistan due to Pakistan’s strategic location as trade hub, which promotes further trade and economic cooperation with the Central Asian states. He also pointed out the potential of bilateral spice trade during the discussion and said that Indonesia produces half of the world’s spices, which are the primary components of Pakistani cuisine. Spices can become the most important commodity traded between the two nations because of many similarities of the cuisines he added. Similarly, the trade prospects of traditional herbal medicines are also bright as they are quiet popular on both sides and also receiving positive response globally, the envoy said.

Ambassador Tugio also appreciated the active role of RCCI in preserving strong economic ties between the two brotherly nations. Both countries can find ways to further boost the bilateral trade with the current Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) as well as by working together to move towards a Free Trade Agreement (FTA). He expressed his gratitude to the RCCI team for sharing the Chamber’s perspective on Pakistan’s business prospects and assured continued collaboration with RCCI on issues of shared interest.

Speaking on this occasion, President RCCI Mr Saqib Rafiq expressed hope that signing of FTA would materialize soon and said that RCCI is ready for sustainable cooperation including exchange of delegation as well as holding bilateral business conference with Indonesia in the fields of information technology, pharmaceutical, halal product, agriculture, education as well as investment. Regarding Halal products, RCCI requested for the alignment of policy on Halal certification between the two countries to further promote the Halal products trade. The President of RCCI also invited the Indonesian Embassy to participate in its Rawal Expo 2023, which will be the biggest trade expo in Rawalpindi.