ISLAMABAD - Kazakhstan Ambassador to Pakistan Yerzhan Kistafin has said that both Pakistan and Kazakhstan have large domestic markets and unique geo-strategic competitive advantages but we have yet to enhance our trade volume by making good use of these opportunities.

While addressing a ceremony arranged by the All Pakistan Business Forum held in view of holding match making and B2B meetings with the Kazakh business delegation, he said the key purpose of visit to Pakistan was to explore the Pakistan markets for further developing the trade and investment opportunities between the two countries.

The delegation members had meeting with members of APBF and also attended a lunch hosted by it. The discussion on the occasion remained fruitful and would definitely pave way for trade, investment and joint ventures between the private sectors of the two countries. The trade delegation showed keen interest in joint ventures in the sectors, including pharma, plastic, agriculture, food processing, steel industry and hi-tech machineries etc.The Kazakh ambassador said the importance of such interaction was hard to be measured as these kinds of meetings cause to arrange more and more follow up meetings which ultimately lead to establish long lasting trade and economic relations. The constant exchanges of business delegations between Pakistan and Kazakhstan was one of the key indicators that both the nations seriously want to seize the increasing trend occurring in balance of trade for the last many years.

Yerzhan Kistafin said that Kazakhstan and Pakistan have always enjoyed smooth development of friendly and neighbourly relations as well as mutually beneficial cooperation. We take Pakistan as an important regional country and a potential trading partner. We have been maintaining strong cultural and diplomatic relations with Pakistan, he added.

APBF President Syed Maaz Mahmood, while speaking on the occasion, said that there can be many areas of trade expansion that may be identified with the help of constant interaction between the private sectors representatives of two countries.

He appreciated the efforts of embassy of Kazakhstan which is doing consistent efforts to enhance the existing level of bilateral trade. He said that Pakistan’s share in bilateral trade has been quite low. I think we also need to make adequate efforts to find more exporting orders so that the trade deficit could be minimised.

The APBF president said that we, from the platform of APBF, always strive for developing and strengthening close working relations with foreign business communities. He said that APBF firmly believer of trade diplomacy and for that matter, we also regularly interact with foreign counterparts. It is needless to mention that Kazakhstan is closest to our hearts.

He informed the Kazakh counterparts that the APBF had been voicing in favour of exploring new avenues other than bilateral trade for the sake of enhancing cooperation between two countries.

We can cooperate in renewable energy, construction, manufacturing sector, automotive, retail market, electronics and other electric equipment, pharmaceutical, industrial and commercial machinery etc, he added.

He hoped business meetings with Kazakh counterparts would play a key role in reviving the national exports. He said that it goes without saying that our embassies along with their subsidiary consulate offices have certain role to play to facilitate the business community of Pakistan who were very eager to develop trade relations with their counterparts in major economies.