Private sector leader Qatar Chamber (QC) has called on the Pakistani business community and their Qatari counterparts to explore the “host of cooperation opportunities” in the real estate, industry, infrastructure, hospitality, renewable energy, and communications sectors.
Speaking at a meeting with Pakistan’s Minister for Commerce and Trade Khurram Dastagir Khan, Qatar Chamber vice-chairman Mohamed bin Twar said he is certain that Qatar and Pakistan “are very much interested in further developing relations to higher levels of constructive cooperation at all fields.”
QC’s board members Mohamed Al Obaidli and Abdul Aziz Ridwany were present at the meeting.
Bin Twar said trade volume between the two countries reached stood at QR2.82bn last year, “and is expected to grow in the coming years.”
“I’d like to stress on the historic LNG deal signed between Qatar and Pakistan last year, which is estimated at $16bn, in which Pakistan will keep importing gas from Qatar until 2032,” he said.
He also underscored the “growing cooperation” between private sector players and businessmen in the fields of energy education, health, tourism, culture, and arts.
Bin Twar also said a large Pakistani community is active in many sectors, including projects related to Qatar’s hosting of the FIFA World Cup in 2022.
“There are also many Pakistani companies and businessmen who are investing in Qatar, taking advantage of the pro-investment environment and the incentives offered by the government to attract more foreign investors to the country,” Bin Twar emphasised.
He added: “On behalf of Qatar Chamber, let me take this opportunity to invite both countries’ businessmen to build real partnerships and explore new areas of cooperation for the benefits of both economies.
Pakistan’s Minister for Commerce and Trade Eng. Khurram Dastagir Khan paid tribute to the development Qatar sees at all sector, assuring that the preparation for the 2022 World Cup is in full swing.
Khan called on Qatari businessmen to visit his country to explore the available investment opportunities, particularly in the promising sectors such as energy, agriculture, food processing, construction and transport.
He underscored the genuine desire of both countries to strengthen their economic relations which resulted in the increase of their bilateral trade volume.
He said that during his stay in Qatar he had very productive meeting with Qatar’s Minister of Economy and Commerce H E Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim bin Mohammed Al Thani.
The minister said that there was a great potential in Pakistan for Qatari businessmen to invest in energy infrastructure, tourism, agro-food processing etc. “Agro food processing is very lucrative sector in which Qatari companies can invest with full confidence. It can be executed quickly as agricultural produce is already there and they just need technology and management.”
The minister said that there was a lot of room for retail infrastructure development in Pakistan. “Qatar is a country with magnificent malls. In Pakistan, the middle class is growing and consumer spending is very high therefore Qatari businessmen can also invest in this sector.”
“I have brought a number of good news about Pakistan. First and foremost is the fact that Pakistan is a peaceful country again as it has overcome violent extremism as well security unrest in Karachi. Now incidents of terrorism have dropped by 77percent,” he said.
He said that government of Pakistan was also encouraging Pakistani companies to participate in infrastructure development related to FIFA 2022. “Pakistan can export home textile, hospitality textile, sports goods, construction material etc. They should participate in exhibition being held in Doha.”
Both sides called for setting up a Qatar-Pakistan business council, enhancing cooperation ties between both countries businessmen, intensifying their mutual visits and removing all constraints hampering their private sectors cooperation.