South Korean companies, especially small and medium enterprises, are keen to invest in Pakistan but they need information about the cost of land for setting up manufacturing units to enhance their presence, said Pakistan’s former ambassador to South Korea Shaukat Ali Mukadam.

During a meeting with Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) President Sardar Yasir Ilyas Khan, the ex-envoy said there was a good scope for increasing the volume of trade between Pakistan and South Korea and urged Pakistan’s manufacturers to concentrate on value addition to their products for promoting exports.

Mukadam stated that Pakistan’s business community had the potential to export fruits and other goods to Korea. He pointed out that the Koreans learnt from Pakistan during the 1960s and currently the secret behind their progress and prosperity was the implementation of right policies.

Speaking on the occasion, the ICCI chief said South Korea’s annual exports stood above $500 billion, but Pakistan-Korea bilateral trade was around $1.1 billion, which was quite nominal compared to the real potential of both countries.

He said the two countries were negotiating a free trade agreement, which should be finalised soon to boost bilateral trade. Khan pointed out that Pakistan could export many products to Korea including textile goods, cotton, fruits, rice, raw hide and skin, fish, surgical instruments, medical apparatus, toys and games, and leather products.

He believed that a little more attention from the Korean government and businessmen could help increase Pakistan’s exports to Korea considerably.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 14th, 2021.

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