Trade: (UBG lauds Govt for resuming dialogue with India)

ISLAMABAD: United Business Group (UBG) of the FPCCI on Thursday welcomed the visit of Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj, positive reaction of Pakistani authorities and agreement to resume composite dialogue.

Trade among Saarc nations could be increased to one hundred billion dollars from the current dismal $28 billion which will unleash new era of peace and prosperity, said Abdul Rauf Alam, FPCCI presidential candidate.

Talking to President Saarc Chamber Suraj Vaidya, he said that twenty five percent trade of the Southeast Asian nations is within region while almost 95 percent trade of Saarc nations is with Europe and America which has impeded development.

He said Saarc countries are not encouraging trade and investment within region while preferring trade through third countries which has made Sub-Continent home to the majority of the poor in the world.

Abdul Rauf Alam, who is also Chairman Founder Group of ICCI, said that once the Sub-Continent was richest place of earth due to free trade but now focus on barriers has changed the situation.

The region with 45 percent youth among 1.7 billion population is among underdeveloped areas where unemployment is fanning unhealthy tendencies.

He said easing trade and visa restrictions, encouraging people-to-people contacts and promoting tourism, health and education can bring countries together which can result in a change.

At the occasion, President Saarc Chamber Suraj Vaidya said that the economic integration of China and South Asian will form a huge market of 2.8 billion people.

We are looking towards China for mega investments in infrastructure development to increase connectivity to boost trade, he added. Chairman Coordination FPCCI Malik Sohail, former president FPCCI Malik Zubair and others were also present in the meeting.

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