“Our mutual trade does not suit two sister countries”

Turkey-Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry Presentation Meeting Forum, with the participation of Turkish and Pakistani Co-Chairmen and members hosted by TOBB President M. Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu.
TOBB President Hisarcıklıoğlu extended his condolences for the lives lost as a result of a military jet of the Pakistani Air Force crashing in the city of Rawalpindi as well as the late Turkey-Pakistan CCI Forum’s first president, Bünyamin Karaca.
Stating that Turkey and Pakistan have strong historical and cultural ties dating back centuries, Hisarcıklıoğlu said, “Whenever Pakistan has a problem, that is also Turkey’s problem; whenever we encountered a problem in Turkey, we received Pakistan’s support. Two nations love each other. Therefore, we support each other and we will continue to support each other. We cooperate in many areas and work together on regional development projects, but unfortunately we could not bring economic cooperation to the desired level. We are together on many platforms. Bilateral trade between Pakistan and Turkey is only around 700 million USD. Our mutual trade is not befitting of two sister countries. Our mutual investments are not at the level we want. Turkey’s direct investment into Pakistan is 1 billion USD, Pakistan’s direct investments into Turkey is 600 million USD.”
Hisarcıklıoğlu said, “Turkey and Pakistan, in close relationship and cooperation in all areas, but our trade figures are like a drop of water in the ocean, do not reflect the potential volume of trade between our countries. This does not make us happy.”
Pointing out that the figures should be raised, Hisarcıklıoğlu stated that they are ready to do whatever they have to do. Pointing out that the visa problem should be solved between the two countries, Hisarcıklıoğlu said, “Visa application stands as a serious obstacle to trade. Especially as the business world, we need to be rid of this visa problem so that more investment and more mutual trade can be conducted.
TOBB President Hisarcıklıoğlu, touching on Turkey’s success in the field of contracting, especially in infrastructure investments under the Pakistan-China economic corridor, said that Turkish contractors should take more work.
Daroo Khan Achakzai, President of the Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Pakistan, pointed out the high potential between the two countries and said there were some shortcomings in the name of mobilizing it. Achakzai stated that there is a need for strong political will to move the relationship further and increase the trade volume, “There are many opportunities both in the Gulf and Central Asia, and we can do this in cooperation. Without the exchange of information, without the interaction, bilateral investment, trade and industrial business, collaborations cannot be raised to the desired level. The two countries raised their friendship to the highest level as quickly as possible. Turkey and Pakistan, carrying out commercial activities by opening their markets to each other, but unfortunately not reflected in many of these cases the figures. The development of Pakistan's industrial, trade and economic relations can be done through the development of the trade network. If bilateral business relations and trade develops between the two countries, this will be reflected in the figures which will increase.”
Ömer Bolat said the forum was founded with the great efforts of TOBB President Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu. Bolat stated that Turkey and Pakistan are not just friendly countries but brothers. Bolat reported that Turkish companies have engaged in a large amount of investments in Pakistan in recent years and that Turkey and Pakistan would continue their development and cooperation in economic and social fields together.