Italian companies ready to explore economic potential in Pak: envoy

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Italian Ambassador to Pakistan Stefano Pontecorvo said on Monday that more than 40 Italian companies had expressed their willingness to explore the opportunities of the Pakistani market.

According to Punjab Board of Investment and Trade (PBIT) spokesperson, the Italian envoy disclosed this, while speaking at a seminar titled, Investment opportunities in Pakistan, in Rome, Italy.

The ambassador said that it was a great occasion for Pakistani business community to have a more structured approach to Italian manufacturers, and hoped that some fruitful partnerships will be followed.

The PBIT spokesperson said that the Board CEO Ms. Amena Cheema was representing Punjab along with other businessmen from agriculture, dairy, livestock, footwear and pharmaceutical sectors including CEO IMAX and Dairy Solutions. A number of different sectors were represented in the seminar including Packaging and Packaging Products, Agro Chemicals/ Agricultural Machinery, Fertilizers, Environmental Products, Chemicals, Industrial Equipment/ Industrial Machinery, Pharmaceutical Products, Foot wear Equipment, Services, Design, Laboratory Equipment and Railway Equipment, she added.

Addressing the seminar, the PBIT CEO Ms. Amena Cheema said, “SMEs are considered the backbone of Italy’s economy. There is considerable potential for cooperation and collaboration through joint ventures between SMEs on both sides, especially in the field of Information and Communications Technology.”

Cheema said that Pakistan was a market of 200 million people, including a growing middle class that looked at Italian quality products with renewed interest. Secondly, Pakistan was becoming the gateway to a vast region of the Asian continent because of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), massive investments that would link it to main international trade routes, she said,

An engaging documentary titled Punjab- the land of opportunity was shown to the participants of the seminar. Following the documentary, Ms.Amena Cheema also highlighted the potential of various sectors in Punjab and available projects for investment through a comprehensive presentation.

Many B2B (business to business), G2B (government to business) and G2G (government to government) meetings are expected to take place on the second day of event, said the board spokesperson.

She said that Pakistan was of strategic importance for Italy and its economy. In 2015 alone, Italy had exported more than 400 billion Euros to Pakistan, with a surplus of 45 billion, but the overall trade volume with Pakistan showed that there was a great potential ahead, she remarked.