Pakistan Prime Minister H E Shehbaz Sharif addressing the Pakistan-Qatar Trade and Investment Roundtable 2022 in Doha, yesterday.
Doha: Prime Minister of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan H E Shehbaz Sharif described the relations between his country and the State of Qatar as “unique”, calling on Qatari investors to intensively carry out investment projects in Pakistan.
The Pakistani Prime Minister was addressing the “Pakistan-Qatar Trade and Investment Roundtable 2022” which was held on Tuesday evening in the presence of Minister of Finance H E Ali bin Ahmed Al Kuwari, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry H E Sultan bin Rashid Al Khater, Chief Executive Officer of Qatar Financial Centre Yousuf Mohamed Al Jaida, along with an array of Qatari and Pakistani business leaders.
In his speech, Prime Minister of Pakistan highlighted the special nature of the existing Qatari-Pakistani ties that are based on mutual respect and trust, pointing out that it is time for Pakistan to engage with the State of Qatar to promote the fraternal relations and explore new prospects, in terms of bilateral trade and investment.
He underscored his country’s entire support for the Qatari investors in deepening their presence in Pakistan, including the firm commitment of his government to provide friendly environment for businesses and investments, pointing out that Pakistan embraces enormous natural and human resources, and that the geographical location of Pakistan enabled it to remain the primary conduit for trade, energy and transport in the region.
He believed that such a unique characteristic has made Pakistan a market full of investment opportunities. In addition, the country has a large consumer market with an ever-expanding middle class, providing attractive business opportunities for investors in food security and energy fields, including renewable energy sources, agriculture and livestock, information technology, hospitality and tourism sectors.
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif underscored that Qatar is a reliable partner and that Pakistan sincerely appreciates its support. He commended the vital and instrumental role the State of Qatar has acquired over time, when it appeared as a wonderful negotiator and mediator from Pakistan to other parts of the world, counting on its credibility as a country that knows well how to build peace and enhance calmness and harmonization.
Earlier, Minister of Finance Ali bin Ahmed Al Kuwari welcomed Prime Minister of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan Shehbaz Sharif and his accompanying delegation in his current official visit to Qatar.
During his inaugural speech at the Pakistan-Qatar Trade and Investment Roundtable 2022, the Minister of Finance highlighted the importance of this roundtable which represents a new impetus for the existing and deep-rooted relations between the two brotherly countries to promote and solidify the financial and economic fields of mutual benefit for the two countries.
For his part, Chief Executive Officer of Qatar Financial Centre (QFC) Yousuf Mohamed Al Jaida said that the holding of this roundtable enhances the investment areas between Pakistan and Qatar and highlights the most important economic indicators that confirm the leading position of the State of Qatar as an open and attractive environment for investments.
Al Jaida reviewed some figures and indicators that reflect the development of relations between the two countries, saying that Qatar became the third largest trading partner of Pakistan in 2017, and the last five years have witnessed a significant jump in Pakistan’s exports to Qatar.
He also pointed to a jump in remittances to Pakistan from the Pakistani residents in Qatar, reaching 91% by the end of 2020, which boosted the Pakistani economy.
In another indication of the growing investment relations between the two countries, the CEO of Qatar Financial Center added that the number of Qatari-Pakistani joint companies operating in Qatar exceeded 1,500, covering various fields of trade and industry. He looked forward to expanding this special relationship with Pakistan and creating greater opportunities for cooperation and trade exchange.
Chairman of the Pakistan-Qatar Business Council Dr. Javed Shaikh stressed that the Pakistan-Qatar Business Council adopts a strategy focuses on achieving valuable long-term results that add to the value of the strong economic, diplomatic and cultural relations between the two sisterly countries.
The roundtable was held to discuss possible opportunities to enhance investment and trade exchange between the State of Qatar and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, within the framework of Qatar’s ongoing initiatives to improve its business environment and strengthen the bilateral relations between the two countries in the financial and economic fields of mutual benefit.
The roundtable, organized by QFC, the Pakistan Business Council – Qatar and the Pakistani Embassy in Doha, focused mainly on exploring new areas of cooperation to establish stronger business-to-business ties. The roundtable speakers included Minister of Commerce of Pakistan H E Naveed Qamar, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs of Pakistan H E Hina Rabbani Khar, Chief Business Officer at QFC H E Sheikha Al Anoud bint Hamad Al Thani, and Honorary Investment Counsellor of Pakistan in the State of Qatar Mohsin Mujtaba.