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Pakistan-Nigeria have huge potential in bilateral trade-M. Ashraf Saleem November 16, 2012
Meeting at ICCI
 
H.E.Lt.Gen.(R). Muhammad Ashraf Saleem, Pakistan’s Ambassador-designate to Nigeria visited Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) to discuss bilateral relation between Pakistan and Nigeria.
 
The Ambassador discussed ways and means to explore and create joint venture opportunities between the two countries. He said that he would ensure to pass on information to Pakistani business community regarding trade opportunities available in Nigeria so they could take benefit and enhance trade ties with Nigeria.
 
He said that Pakistan could assess Nigeria as a potential destination to set up fertilizer plants by taking advantage of optimal gas rates. The Ambassador also emphasized to explore new avenue of cooperation in the areas of trade and economy.
 
Mr.Zafar Bakhtawari, President ICCI, while congratulating H.E.Lt.Gen.(R). Muhammad Ashraf Saleem, said that his posting as Ambassador of Pakistan to Nigeria would usher in a new era of cooperation between the two countries. 
 
ICCI President said that both countries lot of similarities because of almost same population size, interrupted democracy with military regime, experienced British rule and system legacy and serious corruption problem. He said that Pakistan and Nigeria are very important countries of Asia and Africa with very strong potential to rise and lead their respective regions but unfortunately both countries have been under the foreign influence resulting corruption, dis-integration, religious clashes and many others problems.
 
Mr.Bakhtawari said that it has been observed that Nigeria’s trade profile with India is quite sound. He said that India is the second largest trading partner of Nigeria after United States. He said that Pakistan could also compete with India in Nigeria which is a populated country and enhance our exports to Nigeria and respectively African continent. 
 
He said that there is a dire need to identify more tradable products to enhance mutual trade of both countries. ICCI President said that Pakistan is known around the globe for its textile products, sports goods, surgical instruments, fresh fruits & vegetables, rice, carpets, handicrafts, footwear, garments, and so many other consumable items, which still need to be properly introduced in African markets.
 
ICCI President said that all Muslim countries should further promote and strengthen their economic ties and cooperation for exploiting the existing potential and ensuring maximum possible trade exchange.