Ethiopian envoy stresses need for PTA to enhance trade

ISLAMABAD-Ethiopian Ambassador to Pakistan Jemal Beker Abdula on Thursday said that a Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) between Pakistan and Ethiopia was vital for promoting mutual trade and investment relations between the two countries.
During his visit to Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI), the envoy said that the bilateral trade between the two countries was amounted to $78 million and scope existing to take it to $300 million by the end of 2023. Pakistan is a peaceful, culturally rich, and diversified country with immensely strong social values and huge economic potential, he said, adding, there were vast opportunities for promoting exports with Africa.
“Pakistani textiles, pharmaceuticals and other products are in great demand in Ethiopia, Pakistan’s business community must try to take full advantage of the opportunities,” he added. Pakistani textiles, medicines and other products will have more space in the Ethiopian market, he said, adding that confidence-building measures would be taken so that trade between two countries could go to the next level. Speaking on the occasion, Vice President FPCCI Umar Masoodur Rehman underlined the need for signing a preferential trade agreement to improve mutual trade, adding that the agreement would significantly improve bilateral trade.
He said that Pakistan had made a Look Africa Policy to explore huge untapped region of Africa for trade and exports and close cooperation between Pakistan and Ethiopia would helpful in getting better access to African market. He said that many Pakistani products including marble and granite, pharmaceuticals, cement, leather, rice and sports goods could find a good market in Ethiopia and urged the Ethiopia to focus on Pakistan for imports.
He urged that Pakistan and Ethiopia to consider negotiating a preferential or free trade agreement to promote trade relations up to their actual potential. He said that both countries should encourage regular exchange of trade delegations to explore all potential areas of mutual cooperation. He further said that FPCCI would like to work closely with the Ethiopian Embassy to promote business relations between Pakistan and Ethiopia.

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