Islamabad: Ms. Zehra H. Akbari, Pakistan’s High Commissioner-designate to New Zealand visited Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry ICCI to discuss bilateral relation between Pakistan and New Zealand before her departure to New Zealand.
Ms.Zehra H.Akbari said that New Zealand and Pakistan have enjoyed a good relationship over many years as well both the countries were enjoying strong sporting, educational and cultural links which help build the bonds of friendship between two countries.
However, she stressed that more could be done to strengthen the two countries bilateral relationship, particularly in the areas of trade and economic cooperation.
The High Commissioner was of the view that Pakistan needs to focus on trade with other regional trade blocs as a whole instead of focusing only the markets of Europe and United States.
She said that there is tremendous untapped potential in both the markets of New Zealand and Pakistan to boost economic cooperation as current volume of trade between Pakistan and New Zealand was stood around $150million that is not up to the potential.
She assured that, she would do at her best for promotion of business interest of Pakistani business community.
Ms.Zehra said that her first priority would be to establish a commercial section at Pakistan embassy in New Zealand which would pass on information to Pakistani business community regarding trade opportunities available in New Zealand.
In his welcome address, Mr.Zafar Bakhtawari, President ICCI, while congratulating Ms.Zehra H.Akbari, emphasized upon the need to improve the soft image of Pakistan with focus to further strengthening bilateral relations of Pakistan and New Zealand especially in the field of trade, investment.
Mr.Bakhtawari also stressed to enhance the cooperation in the field of information technology and by tapping full potential of IT and software products, Pakistan could also grab a substantial share in the international IT market and enhance its exports as well.
He further said that that there is dire need to improve the export of software products as our neighbouring nation India is exporting software products having worth of $70 billion while Pakistan’s export of software products stood less than $2 billion.
ICCI President said that New Zealand has over 7,000 people of Pakistani community, adding that ICCI want to sign MoU with Capital chamber of Commerce and Industry in Wellington aimed at promoting trade and commerce between the two countries.
ICCI President also informed the Ambassador that ICCI have planned to host a meeting of all the Capital Chambers Conference in Islamabad with the aim to promote mutually beneficial relation between Pakistan and other countries.