PESHAWAR, Pakistan: The Russian Ambassador to Pakistan Alexey Yurievich DEDOV has stressed the need for increasing bilateral trade between Pakistan and Russia.
“The prevailing volume trade between the two countries is very low and it should be increased to a satisfactory level,” observed Russian envoy.
Alexey Yureivich DEDOV expressed these views while speaking to business community during his visit to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KPCCI) here on Wednesday.
President KPCCI, Zulfiqar Ali, Trade Representative of Russian Federation, Yuri Kozlov, Counsel of Russian Embassy, Efegeny and prominent businessmen of KP were also present on the occasion.
Russian Ambassador said potential investors from Russia are showing interest for making investment in Pakistan.
He said both the countries should have to increase confidence between its people, businessmen and even governments.
He recalled big projects set up by former USSR in Pakistan including Pakistan Steel Mill (PSM).
He said still Russia want to launch projects in Pakistan and both the countries should work over removing hurdles in this connection.
Russian envoy also appreciated ongoing military operation Zarb-e-Azb against terrorists and expressed the hope that it will bring economic prosperity in Pakistan.
He agreed with the demand of President KPCCI about increasing exchange of delegations of businessmen from both the countries so that people to people contact improves as a result of which businessmen of both the countries would get awareness about investment opportunities.
Earlier, President KPCCI, Zulfiqar Ali in his welcome address termed the visit of Russian Ambassador to KPCCI a good omen and expressed the hope that interaction will be very fruitful for the bilateral trade between Pakistan and the Russian Federation.
President KPCCI said it is very unfortunate that bilateral trade between Pakistan and Russia stood at dollar 419.34 million in 2013-14 as against dollar 484.47 million in the previous year, reflecting a decline of dollar 65.13 million.
The decline is mainly due to fall of Pakistan exports to Russia which fell by 10.36 percent during the period under review, he added.
In 2014-15, the trade volume further slashed to dollar 390.29 million which is a source of anxiety for the business community as the present trade volume is a peanut while keeping in view the business potential of both the countries.
President KPCCI said the bilateral trade can be improved significantly by encouraging frequent exchange of business delegations.
We feel that there is great potential for bilateral trade in automobiles, construction, agriculture, energy, IT, steel, furniture, household equipment, textiles, meat and dairy sectors, suggest President KPCCI.
Zulfiqar Ali also appreciated Russian Federation decision of decreasing custom duty up to 35 percent on Pakistani goods in the wake of devastating floods in the country in 2010.
President KPCCI also assured the visiting guests that for the purpose of improving quantum of trade between the two countries, we are ready to sign MoU with Russian Federation Chamber of Commerce and Industry to enhance mutually beneficial relations between the two countries.