Huge scope for Pakistan, Finland economic cooperation

Founder Editor Tazeen Akhtar..

Karachi ( Staff Reporter + DNA ) “Finland is leader in the world in many modern technologies as its economy had grown from an agrarian to a highly industrialized one and Pakistan could take advantage of Finland’s experience to promote industry by developing close relations.”

This was stated by Muhammad Haroon Agar, President, Karachi Chamber of Commerce & Industry while exchanging views with Finnish Ambassador to Pakistan Rauli Suikkanen during his visit to KCCI. Haroon Agar added that Finland can help Pakistan in this mining sector, foodstuffs, chemicals, textiles and clothing.

Ample opportunities of joint ventures exist between two countries. Pakistan is the most promising land in the region for investment. Finnish corporations can invest in Pakistan while expanding their businesses across Pakistan and beyond. Finnish investment in Pakistan stood around $3.8 Million in 2013.

He stated that Finland is an important country in European Union which can support Pakistan for getting GSP Plus in EU, entering into Pak-EU Bilateral Investment Treaty, signing of Preferential and further entering into Free Trade Agreement with the EU with preferred market access, he maintained. He also requested the Finnish Ambassadors to invite Finnish companies operating in Pakistan to exhibit in KCCI’s My-Karachi Exhibition scheduled in July 2013 at Expo Centre Karachi.

Haroon Agar further added that the bilateral trade relations between Pakistan and Finland are not significant. In FY12, Pakistan imported commodities of about $ 188Mn while exports to Finland amounted to $ 52Mn which is comparatively quite low showing trade deficit between the two countries. Pakistan can partner with Finnish technological think tank for development of technological industry in Pakistan.

Over 400 Finnish companies are currently operating in South Asian Region and had made substantial investment in the last ten years in this part of the world. The business community is of strong hope that more Finnish investors would divert their attention towards Pakistan in future.

He underscored frequent exchange of business delegations and participation in exhibitions. Pakistan’s top exports to Finland are articles of apparel & clothing, woven fabric (synthetic staple fibre), woven cotton fabric, bed, table, kitchen linens, articles & equipment of gymnastics, men’s suits & jackets, articles of cutlery, women suits & dresses, gloves, mittens, electro medical apparatus, track suits & T-shirts etc.

However important items that Pakistan imports from Finland are electric and telecommunication equipment, parts for motor engines, enzymes, chemical wood pulp, newsprint, pressure reducing valves, electric transformers, paper & paperboard, polymers of ethylene, electric motors & generators etc.

Finland and Pakistan have a huge scope to expand relations in various sectors of the economy therefore the private sector in Pakistan should enhance its interaction with Finnish counterparts. Senior Vice President Shamim Firpo, Vice President Nasir Mehmood and Managing Committee Members of KCCI also exchanged views.

Ambassador of Finland in Islamabad Rauli Suikkanen recognized the vibrant role of KCCI in promotion of trade and industry. He stated that Pakistan holds geo-strategic location in the region. Pakistan is a vibrant country having immense trade potential and resources.

In 2014 Inter Ministerial Meeting is planned for broad-based meeting including trade. FINPRO agency is committed to promote trade between Finland and friendly countries. Perception depicted by media is unfair.

Reciprocal trade need enhancement aligned with true potential. He underscored continuation of democracy to strengthen economy. Finland is hold most hi-tech industries in the Europe region having mixed Eurasian norms and culture. Being the member of EU, Finland will support Pakistan to achieve GSP plus in EU. He hoped newly elected government will resolve energy crises, Finland can offer its assistance.

31 May 2013

Photo ; Ambassador of Finland in Islamabad Rauli Suikkanen