Qurban Ali also said that GB region has a huge potential of tourism and livestock

ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) – Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) Chairman, Qurban Ali urged on Sunday for enhancing the China and Pakistan economic and trade connectivity through the nearer region of Gilgit Baltistan(GB).

The senior business leader said that the GB region is a gateway for CPEC to provide opportunities to the Chinese business community and investors to connect with China as well as other regional countries including Central Asian Republics (CARs) to get benefits from their economies said a statement by FPCCI.

The Chairman FPCCI said this in meeting of a delegation of the FPCCI led by him to Ambassador of China in Islamabad, Nong Rong was held at Chinese embassy along with senior business leaders Immediate Past Vice President FPCCI, Muhammad Ali Quaid, Coordinator FPCCI Capital Office, Islamabad Mirza Abdul Rehman.

The President Hunza Chamber of Commerce Industry (CCI) Mehboob Rabani and Former President Gilgit CCI, Mushtaq Hussain also attended the meeting.

He said that China Pakistan Economic (CPEC) related Gilgit Baltistan (GB) Special economic Zone (SEZ) and others would increase the business and industrial cooperation between China and Pakistan.

Qurban said that Chinese investors and businessmen can invest and start Joint Ventures (JVs) with local industrialists in Gilgit Baltistan, SEZ in value addition on agriculture, livestock, mines and minerals and milk products.

While he said that in Gilgit Baltistan, there is huge potential of hydro power, which also supports any Chinese investor for available cheap energy to the industrial sector and provides secure business opportunity.

Qurban Ali also said that GB region has a huge potential of tourism and livestock as the region owns the 8 biggest mountains of the world including any raw material for the Industrial sector and agro- industries.

Due to close proximity with China the local business community of Gilgit Baltistan has been facing certain issues and having some benefits as well, he said.

Qurban Ali said that during the COVID-19 because of closure of Khunjerab Pass bilateral trade volume between Pakistan and China through Khunjerab was decreasing.

He informed that because of expensive freight charges of Chinese trucks/ containers bilateral trade was in halt.

In briefing he informed that for instance, the freight charges from Urumqi to Sust which was 1889 KM, for 30 feet containers is 20000 RMB in November 2017.

He added that now the freight of vehicles which usually is about 20,000 RMB has been increased up to 120,000 RMB.

Qurban also said that the issues of the Chinese Visas for genuine businessmen should be simplified and easy to provide the facility to the business community of Pakistan on the recommendation of FPCCI.

He said that last year s no Pakistani businessman went to China due to the closure of the border due to COVID-19 pandemic and now visa s process should be easy and simplified for the business community.

While the Ambassador of China to Pakistan, Nong Rong welcomed the delegation of FPCCI to Chinese Embassy and told that he has served as Mayor in the city of Guigang, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region near to GB region.

The ambassador said that China and Pakistan have a long term relationship and the CPEC is a project of shared prosperity and economic integration between the two brotherly countries.

He said that there is the history of cherished relations of the FPCCI and Chinese enterprises, which played huge role for business to business ties between both of the country He said that the China embassy in Islamabad would like to coordinate with the enterprises of both the countries and also to promote Pakistan s enterprise in China.

In meeting coordinator FPCCI Capital Office, Mirza Abdul Rehman has briefed the ambassador FPCCI function and organization.

He also highlights the different aspects of Pakistan and China economic and trade ties and role of FPCCI for promoting the trade between both sides.

Muhammad Ali Quaid, Immediate past Vice President FPCCI welcome the efforts of Chinese embassy in Islamabad for promoting the bilateral trade and businesses.

He said that GB is a nearer region of China, which totally depends on trade with China.