By: Junaid Qayyum
Islamabad: H.E. Paulo Neves Pocinho, Ambassador of Portugal said that his country wanted to enhance cooperation with Pakistan in many fields including trade, IT, education and other sectors as both countries have good potential to strengthen bilateral collaboration for mutual benefit. He stressed that ICCI should take a trade delegation to Portugal to explore new areas of business cooperation. He was exchanging views with Muhammad Ahmed Waheed, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry during his visit to Chamber House. Saif ur Rahman Khan Vice President ICCI, Shaukat Hayat Khan, Muhammad Aslam Khokhar, Khalid Chaudhry and others were present at the occasion.
Paulo Neves Pocinho said that being a hi-tech country, Portugal can cooperate with Pakistan in technology and machinery. He said that Portugal’s universities were top ranking providing a pool of highly qualified professionals and Pakistani students should take benefit by studying in Portugal at affordable cost. He said that Portugal’s economy has witnessed a paradigm shift over the past 10 years. Rather than just exporting goods, the country has also looked to export its services and Pakistan could benefit by enhancing cooperation with Portugal in services sector. He said that ICCI should sign MoU with Portugal Chamber of Commerce & Industry to promote B2B relations between the private sectors of Pakistan and Portugal.
Speaking at the occasion, Muhammad Ahmed Waheed, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry said that trade volume between Pakistan and Portugal was not reflective of their actual potential and both countries should promote strong business linkages between the private sectors to identify untapped areas of mutual cooperation. He said that Pakistan was producing quality products at affordable prices and stressed that Portugal should consider enhancing its top imports from Pakistan.
He said that 60 percent population of Pakistan was comprised of youth and both countries can learn from each other’s experience of incubation to develop startup companies and promote culture of entrepreneurship. He said that both countries have good potential to exchange expertise in the fields of education, science, information technology and tourism that would strengthen bilateral relations. He said Portugal was quite strong in high technology and it should cooperate with Pakistan to manufacture value added and hi-tech products.
Saif ur Rahman Khan Vice President, ICCI, Muhammad Aslam Khokhar, Shaukat Hayat Khan and others also spoke at the occasion and emphasized upon the need of frequent exchange of trade delegations to identify new areas for bilateral cooperation.
It was agreed that ICCI and Portugal Embassy would explore the possibilities of promoting student exchange programs and business delegations between the two countries.