Curb illegal trade between Pakistan, Iran LAHORE: Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) President Abdul Basit said on Wednesday that curbing illegal trade between Iran and Pakistan can give considerable boost to the bilateral trade volume.
Talking to an Iranian delegation led by Mohsen Heidarian at the LCCI, Mr Basit said illegal trade is not only damaging local industries, but also causing a huge loss to the exchequers of the two countries.
Members of the Iranian delegation, Mohsen Varzeshkar and M S Attarseyedi from Jey Oil Refinery Company, also spoke on the occasion.
Mr Basit informed the visiting delegation that oil refineries in Pakistan are doing well despite a considerable fall in international oil prices. Its main reason, he added, is that there has been no decline in the demand for petroleum products.
He said Pakistan requires more than 22 million tonnes of oil annually, adding that it will take time to achieve self-sufficiency.
He said there is great scope for Iranian companies in the export of petroleum products to Pakistan. Additionally, he said Iranian companies can set up oil refineries in Pakistan in collaboration with local counterparts.
The LCCI president said the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is likely to increase the demand for petroleum products in view of the projected rise in logistic activities across the country.
Maximum efforts are needed to strengthen Pakistan-Iran relations in all fields, Mr Basit said, adding that both sides must conduct market research to further improve bilateral trade relations.
He said the two countries should give each other priority for trading goods instead of doing business with faraway countries. He also called for collaboration in small and medium enterprises (SMEs) as well as mega projects like onshore and offshore oil and gas exploration, hydel and coal-based energy projects, paper and board, sugar, cement, chemicals, transport and communication, infrastructure, scientific and educational cooperation, handicrafts, artificial jewellery, carpets and fancy furniture.
Members of the Iranian delegation also spoke about improving bilateral trade and investment opportunities.