ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has said that Pakistan is open for business, and there are over 1,000 Multinational Companies profitably operating in Pakistan.
Talking to a high level delegation comprising of prominent businessmen and investors from Bahrain, the prime minister said that Multinational Companies enjoy a level playing field with the domestic investors in Pakistan and do not face any barriers to entry or exit. He said that they can expand capital and infrastructure without hindrance.
The Bahraini delegation was led by Chairman Bahrain Chamber of Commerce and Industries (BCCI) Khalid Almoayed, and comprised of Vice Chairman BCCI Khalid Al Zayani, Senior Member BCCI Sheikh Mohamad Bin Isaac, Executive Board Member BCCI Muhammad Sajid, Chairman Joint Council BCCI Muhammad Usman, Executive Board Member Ahmed Bin Hindi, Ali, Member Parliament Ahmed Bufarson, Chairman SME Council Ahmed Al Saloom, Chairwoman of Business Council Ferial Nas, Member BCCI Suhair Bokhammas and others.
The Minister for Industries, Commerce & Tourism Kingdom of Bahrain Zayed R. Alzayani was also present on the occasion.
While warmly welcoming the business delegation to Pakistan, the prime minister stated that Pakistan welcomes the initiative of establishing the Pakistan-Bahrain Joint Holding Company by Bahraini Businessmen.
“We are confident that it will be successful in increasing bilateral trade and investment,” he said.
The Bahraini businessmen appreciated the prime minister’s policy of welcoming foreign investment and said that they are keen to play an active role in expanding the volume of trade between both countries.
The prime minister informed the delegation about China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and said that CPEC is not only a framework of regional connectivity but a game changer for the region.
Sharif said that CPEC is a corridor of energy, roads, motorways, pipelines, rail networks and optic fiber with an investment outlay of over US$ 51 billion. He said that the government as well as business community of Bahrain can benefit immensely from the opportunities and prospects offered by CPEC.
Nawaz Sharif said that the Economic outlook of Pakistan has altogether changed in the last three years which is being acknowledged by independent financial rating institutions.
“My government after coming into power started making best efforts to put the economy on a path of sustained long-term economic growth. In this context, focus remained on public-private partnership in the development process, improved productivity in agriculture sector, removal of energy shortage, enhanced industrial competitiveness, better service delivery system and upgraded human capital formation”, the prime minister said.
The Bahraini delegates expressed their keen interest to take part in Pakistan’s emerging economy and highlighted their interest in further expanding exports from Pakistan for Gulf Counties.
The prime minister said that the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is protected under Law through the Acts of Parliament and the Law of Special Economic Zones (SEZs) has been made to meet the global challenges of competitiveness to attract FDI.
Nawaz Sharif said that the law allows creating industrial cluster with liberal incentives, infrastructure, investor facilitation services to enhance productivity and reduce cost of doing business for economic development and poverty reduction.
The prime minister assured the delegation that Pakistan is a land of unlimited opportunities and offers investment opportunities in various sectors such as energy, agriculture, food processing, infrastructure, information and communication technology, textiles, apparel, surgical instruments and leather products.
“I am confident that investors from Bahrain will benefit from opportunities arising from the economic growth of Pakistan leading to further growth of our trade relations” he said.
The Bahrain Chamber of Commerce & Industries’ delegation thanked the prime minister for his warm welcome to Pakistan and expressed the hope to further strengthen trade ties with Pakistan.
Minister for Finance Ishaq Dar, Minister for Commerce, Engineer Khurram Dastgir Khan, Ambassador to Bahrain Javed Malik, and other senior officials were also present during the meeting.