KARACHI – High Commissioner of India Sharat Sabharwal has said that productive Pak-India dialogue and subsequent development is not only beneficial for two countries but would also integrate SAARC bloc.
Addressing the business community during his visit to the KCCI, he said that pace of economic growth in South Asia was slow and intra-regional trade in SAARC block was only 5pc while in ASEAN it was 25pc and EU about 65pc. Consequent to Pak-India bilateral talks and its progress, new synergies and opportunities will be created in SAARC region. He asked to find new avenues to promote economic integration. He registered his gratitude to business communities of two countries who cooperated and pushed the two governments to move forward. He also admired strong support of Chairman Businessmen Group Siraj Kassam Teli in the process. Sharat Sabharwal said that Indian Prime Minister had accepted the invitation to visit Pakistan however dates are not finalized. He recognized the vibrant role of KCCI in socio-economic progress of Pakistan and to provide meaningful proposals for enhancement in bilateral trade. He informed that it was his 4th visit to KCCI and he expected to further forge cooperation between KCCI and Indian High Commission. He articulated that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s vision is to transform South Asia with the cooperation of all neighbouring countries of India, including Pakistan, the region moves from poverty to prosperity and from ignorance to a knowledgeable society.
Earlier, Karachi Chamber of Commerce & Industry’s President Muhammad Haroon Agar, in his welcome address, expressed that fostering the process of regional trade and economic cooperation between Pakistan and India will bring peace and prosperity in the region. He applauded steps taken by Pak-India governments to enhance bilateral economic and commercial cooperation and to promote peace and prosperity in the region. He also recognized and commended efforts of Indian High Commissioner in this regard.
He hoped that “negative list” will be dismantled before the end of year 2012 and Pakistan will accord MFN status to India as well. He voiced that KCCI firmly believes that both countries will have to demonstrate same greater political will to foster relations as shown in negotiations during last two years. Chairman Businessmen Group Siraj Kassam Teli appreciated the present moves by Indo-Pak governments for strengthening commercial and economic ties. He was satisfied to note that things between two countries were moving on fast track as many barriers were removed, banking channel agreed, and joint ventures in progress.
Former presidents KCCI Majyd Aziz, Haroon Bari, Saeed Shafiq, Mian Abrar Ahmad, Senior Vice President KCCI Shamim Firpo, Vice President Nasir Mehmood and Managing Committee Members also participated in the meeting.