KCCI urges signing of FTA with Mauritius

Daily Times | January 03, 2013

KCCI urges signing of FTA with Mauritius

KARACHI: Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) urged to pave way forward to sign Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Pakistan and Mauritius.

KCCI President Haroon Agar talking to High Commissioner of Mauritius to Pakistan Mohammmad Rashad Daureeawo said in 2007 Pakistan and Mauritius signed Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA), which allowed hundred tariff lines to be traded between two countries on preferential terms. The ultimate objective of this PTA is to pave the way for a FTA encompassing almost all products, trade and services.

Serious efforts are required from both the governments and business communities level to enhance bilateral trade and to double the trade volume between two countries. Pakistan and Mauritius can join hands to have joint ventures in Mauritius Exclusive Economic Zone to extend their trade to various African countries and reciprocally Pakistan could help Mauritius to extend trade from Gwadar Port to Central Asian Republic, South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation block, Middle East and Gulf Cooperation Council countries.

India is giving much attention to Mauritius and subsequently Pakistani investors should also come forward and capture their market share in Mauritius.

Mutual economic and commercial cooperation opportunities exist in tourism, textile, sugar, healthcare, education and financial services.

Pakistan can export to Mauritius meat, fish fillets, fruits and vegetables, flowers, textiles, garments, sugar, sports and surgical goods, footwear etc. He requested the Ambassador to invite exhibitors to participate in the Karachi Chamber’s My-Karachi Oasis of Harmony Exhibition being held in July 2013.

Rashad Daureeawo said there was huge scope for Pakistani furniture, textiles, tiles and sanitary ware, carpets and mangoes and these marvellous opportunities should be tapped.

He asserted upon the need to sign accord between KCCI and Mauritius Chamber of Commerce and Industry for enhanced mutual cooperation to facilitate business communities of two countries.

Mauritius wants to further strengthen economic ties with Pakistan through the expansion of already signed PTA in various fields. Pakistani goods are best of the best in the world and have the potential to win respectable place in Mauritius market. It is very encouraging that Mauritius-Pakistan Joint Working Groups is now envisaging negotiations for a FTA hopefully would play very useful role.

To establish direct air-link between two countries talks are underway between Air Mauritius and Pakistan International Airline, he informed. If basic visa requirements are completed Mauritius High Commission in Islamabad can issue visa in one day, he conversed.

Pakistan exports to Mauritius comprise rice, cotton yarn, woven fabric, cotton fabric, bakery items and medicament mixtures while Pakistan imports from Mauritius sugar, food processing items, rubber and wood articles etc. High Commissioner underscored the need for exchange of business delegations to jack-up bilateral trade and dissemination of trade-related information.

Pakistani businessmen can export to any African market from Export Zones of Mauritius.

The country has a population of only 1.3 million but attracts around one million tourists annually due to peaceful and tolerant environment. He said Pakistani children while studying in Mauritius can get a degree from European University on economical fee structure. staff report

source: Daily Times