14 April | 2024

Lahore, Pakistan

Envoy suggests expansion in bilateral trade between Pakistan, Bulgaria

Ambassador Irena Gancheva says to share information with Lahore Chamber about international exhibitions in Bulgaria

Ambassador of Bulgaria Irena Gancheva has said that Pakistan and Bulgaria need to explore opportunities for collaboration as Balkan nation offers collaboration and business opportunities in agriculture, food processing, information technology, new technologies, and various other sectors.

Speaking at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Lahore, she said that the bilateral figures of trade between Pakistan and Bulgaria need to be improved. She said that new trends were also observed in trade between both countries as Bulgaria was exporting wheat and importing mainly textile items from Pakistan as this was the case of whole of the European Union.

Lahore Chamber President Kashif Anwar presented the address of welcome while Senior Vice President Zafar Mahmood Chaudhry also spoke on the occasion. Executive Committee Members Raja Hassan Akhter, Mian Attiq ur Rehman, Ahmed Elahi and Mohammad Tauqeer Malik were present in the meeting. Ambassador Irena Gancheva gave in depth information about Bulgaria – a European Union member state since 2007.

She said that Bulgaria offers favorable taxation system for the investors and with strong traditions, and Bulgaria provides access to all European market with 1.3 billion customers. She said that Bulgaria was very good in information technology, automotive, mechanical engineering, electronics, mechatronics and robotics and also provides very low operational costs. “Bulgaria is a very strong in manufacturing plastic and rubber products.”

The ambassador said that Bulgaria has top 10 fastest internet mobile with world class artificial research. She emphasized on exploring more opportunities to diversify trade and partnerships. As member of the European Union, Bulgaria was also part of GSP Plus arrangements. She said that she will share information with the Lahore Chamber regarding international exhibitions in Bulgaria during this year.

LCCI President Kashif Anwar suggests collaborations, exchanges between Pakistani and Bulgarian universities

Lahore Chamber President Kashif Anwar said that Pakistan and Bulgaria enjoy cordial diplomatic, political and economic relations. “Bulgaria has been giving continued support to Pakistan for GSP Plus status which has played a very important role in enhancing Pakistan’s exports to the European Union,” he said. Calling Bulgaria an important economy, he said that its strategic location serves as a gateway for Pakistani products to enter the European market.

He said that strengthening trade ties with Bulgaria opens up avenues for Pakistani exporters to expand their reach into the European market. He said that it was important to recognize the immense opportunities that lie ahead in enhancing trade and economic relations between the two countries. “We need to make some concerted efforts to boost bilateral trade to at least one billion dollars in near future.

Kashif Anwar said that the volume of Bulgaria’s total global trade was around 108 billion dollars whereas Pakistan’s share in it was merely 80 million dollars. He said that it does not reflect the actual potential of bilateral trade. “Pakistan exports bed-linen, woven fabrics, cotton yarn, tobacco, medical appliances and rice etc to Bulgaria and our imports consist of wheat, worn clothing, tobacco and parts of tractors etc,” he said.

He said that there was a considerable scope for Bulgaria to enhance its imports of citrus fruits, mangoes, value added textiles, sports goods, leather products, furniture and marble etc from Pakistan. He said the potential areas where Pakistan and Bulgaria can enhance economic cooperation through joint ventures were information technology, food processing, automotive sector, tourism, and agriculture technology.

Envoy suggests expansion in bilateral trade between Pakistan, Bulgaria
Ambassador of Bulgaria Irena Gancheva at Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry

“There is tremendous potential of cooperation in education sector by developing collaborations between Pakistani and Bulgarian universities and arranging exchanges of faculty and students.” The LCCI president informed the ambassador about the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC) established by the government to primarily focus on expediting new investments in five areas, including defense, agriculture, minerals, information technology, telecommunication and the energy.

He hoped that the ambassador would apprise the Bulgarian investors about the investment opportunities in Pakistan. “The Punjab government is making all out efforts to improve business climate in the province by facilitating national and foreign investors through one window operations in the Business Facilitation Centers,” he said, adding that there was a great need to connect the private sectors. “It can be done through exchange of export-oriented delegations and participation in trade fairs and exhibitions.”