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Murad invites Russian firms to benefit from business opportunities in Sindh

KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah on Wednesday said that in the emergence of a multi-polar world and changing power configurations worldwide and in the South Asian region, Pakistan’s close association with Russia is important and cooperation between both countries would bring prosperity to the entire South Asian region.

The chief minister was speaking to a delegation from Saint Petersburg, Russia led by Vice Governor Mr Sergej N. Movchan, consisting of leading companies in the fields of energy, oil and gas, textile and fashion industry, light industry, pharmaceuticals and others to create business linkages and enhance bilateral trade leading to meaningful cooperation.

CM Sindh said that the current phase between the two countries is very promising and encouraging as there have been frequent high-level visits over the past few years, and interaction between the two-sides compared to the past has been intense.

It may be noted that Vice Governor of Saint Petersburg visited Karachi from April 24-26 on the occasion of 70th anniversary of diplomatic relationship between Pakistan and Russian Federation. This is the reciprocal visit along with a business delegation to strengthen the relationship between Sindh and St. Petersburg, Russia.

On the occasion, CM Sindh and Vice Governor of St Petersburg signed a Memorandum of Understanding for further cooperation in education, energy, oil and gas, textile, water filtration and pharmaceuticals.

The Sindh Board of Investment had a hosted a meeting and Sindh – St. Petersburg Business Forum during the Vice Governor’s meeting earlier this year to initiate partnerships with Russian counterparts.

Russia is currently involved in many energy projects in Pakistan and is committed to help alleviate the energy crisis. Russia is the world’s largest producer of oil and gas, and Pakistan has welcomed Russian investment in the energy sector. The expertise of Russian oil firms like Rosneft and Gazprom have contributed significantly in developing Pakistan’s oil and gas potential.

The chief minister said that the trade links have existed historically between the two countries, but the volume of trade needs to be increased exponentially so that both countries can reap more benefits.

Pakistan exported goods worth $ 131.68 million in 2017 as against exports of $ 151.41 million in 2016 which shows a decline of 13 percent.

During the meeting it was agreed that the Saint Petersburg would provide technical assistance and technology in the treatment of waste water and desalination of sea water.

The chief minister also invited Saint Petersburg and Russian business community to invest in Thar Coal mining and power generation. He also added that Russians have expertise in ports and shipping sector.

The Sindh government is interested to develop Keti Bandar ports and jetty. He invited Russian firms to come over and take benefit from business opportunities in Sindh.

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