SCCI calls for signing FTA to strengthen Pak-Tunisia trade ties

PESHAWAR - President Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), Muhammad Ishaq has underscored the need of signing of free trade agreement (FTA) to further strengthen Pak-Tunisia bilateral trade and economic relations. Prospects are very bright to improve Pak-Tunisia mutual trade economic ties, he said while speaking as guest of honour at a ceremony, hosted by Tunisian Honorary Consul General in KP, Hammad Rashid in the honour of Ambassador of Republic of Tunisia in Pakistan, Borhene El Kamel here at local hotel, said a press release here on Wednesday. Speaker Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly Mushtaq Ahmad Ghani was the chief guest at the ceremony while Special Assistant to Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Barrister Muhammad Ali Saif, Secretary Information Arshad Khan, Tunisia Honorary Consul General in KP, Hammad Rashid, WCCI Peshawar president Ms Azra Jamshid, representative of Foreign Ministry in Peshawar Ms Sundas Ali Khan, Deputy Head of Mission Tunisia, Honarary Consul Generals Lahore and Karachi, members of the business community, relevant government officials and representatives from relevant stakeholders also attended the event. Ishaq noted that huge potentials and vast opportunities were available to boost up bilateral trade relations between Pakistan and Tunisia. He invited the Tunisian investors to make investments in potential sectors in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The SCCI chief went on to say that Pakistan and Tunisia were tied with cordial economic, political and defence relations. However, he stressed that current bilateral trade volume between the two countries was very low, which should be enhanced by signing of FTA, launching of joint ventures, exchange of business communities and taking benefits from each other’s potentials and experiences. Furthermore, he stressed pragmatic steps are needed to be taken for countering negative propaganda and hurdles in the way of bilateral Pak-Tunisia. He expressed the hope that Pak-Tunisia mutual economic and trade relations will be improved after signing FTAs shortly. Ishaq revealed that SCCI has planned to hold an investment opportunities conference and trade expo in Tunisia, hoping that Pak-Tunisia trade relations would be put in a new direction through this planned event.
The Chamber’s president invited the Tunisia investors to make investments in olive, farming, mining, tourism and other potential sectors of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He thanked the honorary consul general Hammad Rashid for inviting him to this august event.
Borhene El Kamel, Ambassador of the Republic of Tunisia in Pakistan, while speaking at the ceremony said that his country was giving much importance to improve mutual economic, trade, political and defence relations with Pakistan and pragmatic steps had been taken in this regard. He said that Tunisia and Pakistan were enjoying cordial economic, trade, political and defence ties.
He, however, emphasized that it was dire need of hour to take further steps to improve the current bilateral trade volume between the two countries.
The envoy said Tunisia is a gateway to Africa and onward Europe, so the Republic of Tunisia is a lucrative destination for foreign investors. He invited Khyber Pakhtunkhwa businessmen to make investments in potential sectors in Tunisia.
Kamel said his country has finalized a free trade agreement (FTA) with Pakistan. He also revealed a joint Tunisia-Pak investment conference and trade exhibition is planned to be organized next year. He pinned high hope that Tunisia-Pak bilateral trade and economic relations will improve in the coming days.
The ceremony was also addressed by Speaker KP Assembly Mushtaq Ahmad Ghani, SACM Barrister Muhammad Ali Saif, Ms Sundas Ali, Honorary CG Tunisia in KP, Hammad Rashid and others who highlighted the importance of enhancing Pak-Tunisia mutual trade and economic ties.

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