KARACHI: In a bid to increase trade relations with Pakistan, the UK is planning to open new vistas in the particular field and to analyse the overall situation, the British Deputy High Commissioner (BDHC) in Karachi, Mike Nithavrianakis has concluded a three day visit to Pakistan’s industrial cities of Sialkot, Lahore and Faisalabad.
During his visit, the British Deputy High Commissioner held series of meetings with prominent businessmen and visited industrial units to discuss potential trade opportunities for mutual benefit, and to better understand the current business climate.
In Sialkot, he met Nadeem Anwer Qureshi, Chairman for Sialkot International Airport Limited (SIAL), and Muhammad Ashraf Malik, President Sialkot Chamber of Commerce along with other prominent businessmen.
In Lahore, he met Additional Inspector General, Ali Aamir Malik, Managing Director, Punjab Safe Cities Authority and Lieutenant General Muzammil Hussain (Retd) Chairman WAPDA. The British Deputy High Commissioner also visited the Walled City of Lahore and appreciated the city’s old architecture.
In Faisalabad, Mike met with Rana Mohammad Sikander Azam and other members of Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He also visited the Pakistan Aluminium Beverage Cans Ltd, a UK-Pakistan Joint Venture in Pakistan’s largest industrial estate
Mike Nithavrianakis, said: “These vibrant industrial cities form the backbone of Pakistan’s exports, earning vital foreign exchange, generating employment and enhancing competitiveness. I have been impressed by the cities’ business leaders and their commitment to boosting Pakistan’s economic and trade links with the world.
“The products and services – as diverse as footballs, medical devices, musical instruments and textiles – manufactured by people here are famous around the world. Now is the time for the private sector to be encouraged and supported at every level to promote bilateral trade between the UK and Pakistan and develop long-term, sustainable business relations”.
Pak-UK trade history
• Total trade in goods and services between the UK and Pakistan was £3.3 billion from July 2018 to June 2019, an increase of 4.7% or £147m from the previous year.
• By June 2019, Pakistan exported £2 billion of goods and services to the UK, an increase of 6.9% or £128m compared to the previous year.
• By June 2019, Pakistan imported £1.3 billion of goods and services from UK, an increase of 1.5% or £19m compared to the previous year.
• The UK is Pakistan’s largest export market in Europe and is the third largest globally after the US and China. UK is also Pakistan’s largest export market globally for services.
• In 2017, UK Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Pakistan totalled £791 million, accounting for 0.1% of total UK FDI in that year. Pakistan’s FDI in the UK in 2017 stood at £6m.
• Around 135 British firms operate and invest in Pakistan.