PR No.204 Commerce Minister Chairs Trade Officers Conference in Brussels. Islamabad: January 23, 2017.

Federal Minister for Commerce Engineer Khurram Dastgir Khan chaired conference of Trade Officers of Pakistan deputed to countries of European Union. The two day conference was organized by the Embassy of Pakistan in Brussels to discuss and review challenges, opportunities  and strategies regarding trade and investment with European Union particularly in the context of GSP +, says a   Press Release received from Brussels here today.

In his key note address to the participants of the conference Engineer Khurram Dastgir khan expressed the resolve to meet head on challenges faced by Pakistan in European markets vigorously and to device strategies to promote Pakistani products. He called upon trade officers to take advantage of opportunities offered by China Pakistan Economic Corridor and growth in Pakistan’s national economy made possible by strengthening of democratic institutions and improvement of security situation in Pakistan.

The Minister advised trade officers to explore opportunities of diversifying exports of goods and services in their respective areas of jurisdiction and share successful experiences with each other. He said that with the improvement in security situation investors have started to come back to Pakistan. Moreover country’s liberal policies of investment offered one of the most attractive investment regime in the region, he added.

The opening session of the conference was Co -chaired by Pakistan’s Ambassador to Belgium, European Union and Luxembourg Mrs Naghmana A Hashmi and Pakistan’s Permanent Representative to World Trade Organization in Geneva Ambassador Dr Tauqeer Shah. Trade officers discussed Pakistan’s trade with European Union and made detailed presentations on their respective countries.

The trade officers who participated in the conference included: Mr Omar Hameed Economic Minister, Brussels, Belgium, Mr. Muhammad Naseem Rashed Commercial Secretary, Brussels, Mr Jehangir Mushtaq Commercial Counsellor Berlin , Mr Rizwan Tariq, Commercial Counsellor, Consulate General of Pakistan, Frankfurt, Germany, Mr Muhammad Daud Pirzado Commercial Counsellor, Prague, Czech Republic, Mr. Ahmad Irfan Aslam Commercial Counsellor, Paris, France, Ms Saira Imdad, Commercial Counsellor, Rome, Italy, Syed Mahmood Hassan Commercial Counsellor, The Hague, Netherlands, Dr Muhammad Hamid Ali Commercial Counsellor, Madrid, Spain, Mr. Sajid Raja Commercial Counsellor, London , UK, Mr Shoaib Zafar Commercial Secretary. Manchester, UK and Ms Saima Sabah Commercial Counsellor, Stockholm, Sweden.

Pakistan’s trade with European Union has risen substantively after the grant of GSP+ status to Pakistan. According to the figures provided by Eurostat the total volume of trade for 2015 was 10,499 million Euros as compared to 9,603 in 2014 and 8,377in 2013. In 2015 exports from Pakistan constituted 6,071 million Euros and imports from EU stood at 4,428. In 2016 for the period January to August Pakistan’s exports to EU were 4,207 million Euros as compared to 4,088 in the corresponding period in 2015 showing an increase by 3%.  Home textiles, clothing, footwear, cotton, surgical instruments, leather and sports goods comprise major portion of Pakistan’s exports to the EU.