Karachi: Surprised at the infrastructure development, especially road networks, Indian entrepreneurs continued their visit to Pakistan, as part of a 15-member delegation of the Federation of Indian Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (FISME) yesterday.
The delegation signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI).
“After meeting businessmen and government officials, I am convinced that India and Pakistan can increase their bilateral trade,” FISME Joint Secretary (International trade) Mukesh Kalra commented on the signing of the MoU.
Kalra said that Pakistan possessed an excellent road network, especially in Punjab, which would greatly benefit bilateral trade.
Those who say bilateral trade would be in India’s favour should also see that India-China trade is heavily tilted in the latter’s favour, said Kalra, adding that despite this India has never said no to China since theirs is a bigger economy.
“India is a bigger economy but if Pakistan looks at the business potential and compete with its products, it can rapidly grow its exports to India.”
India-China bilateral trade has already crossed $100 billion, while trade between Pakistan and India is hovering around $2.6 billion mainly owing to political tension between the two countries.
“I met various businessmen in Pakistan and found out that India and Pakistan can do everything from trading to manufacturing. But for that they need to learn from each other and move forward,” said Servotch Power System MD Raman Bhatia.
Some visiting Indian businessmen said that they were ready to set up their factories in Pakistan, but were wary of the time constraint owing to constant political tension in the two countries.
Bombay Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) President Neera Saggi said there is a strong realisation in India that small and medium size industries are growth engines that create most jobs.
On Pak-India trade, she said that business people of the two countries needed to meet frequently so that they could understand each other’s requirements for trade and commerce.
“What Pakistan, India and Bangladesh need to understand is that south Asia is a big market and no country can meet its requirements alone,” said Saggi. “Therefore, we all need to look what we can produce and sell in our neighborhood.”