ISLAMABAD: President SAARC Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Monday felicitated Chairman Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Imran Khan on his party’s success throughout the country in general election and his nomination for premiership.
He hoped that a strong political will under Imran’s leadership can lead to economic growth and poverty elimination in the SAARC region besides integration of the intra-trade, travel and tourism.
In a statement SAARC CCI President Ruwan Edirisinghe said that It will be the political will, the determination and the bonding together of the SAARC countries which would enable the growth, eliminate poverty to take place.
PTI supremo has highlighted the desire to improve trade and commercial ties between Pakistan and India to benefit both and to reduce poverty which is heartening as it will improve overall environment in the SAARC region, he added.
Majority of the world’s poor lives in the SAARC region which can be lifted out of abject poverty if both countries agree to decide matters through result oriented parleys .It will also trigger regional trade and ensure peace which will benefit all the countries and the business community, he observed.
The SAARC CCI head said that local business community had also welcomed warmly the victory of Imran Khan and expressed their hopes that Imran Khan would introduce business friendly policies in the country to promote business activities which will ultimately helpful increasing trade in the region.
“Business community was very encouraged by the PTI victory which is also evident from the sentiments in the market and he hopes that the party will deliver,” he added.
Comparing South Asia with other regions across the globe, Ruwan said with more than one-fifth of the world’s population, the SAARC region is home to two-fifths of the world’s poor.
However, it accounts for only 3 per cent of global output and 2 per cent of world exports. Intra-regional trade has stagnated at around 5 per cent of its total trade, compared to over 50 per cent in East Asia and around 20 per cent in Latin America.
Even Sub-Saharan Africa, with poor transport and telecommunication infrastructure, scores over South Asia, with over 10 per cent of its trade being intra-regional.
Ruwan said India, a connecting land mass and the largest economy of the region, has a special responsibility in increasing intra-regional economic integration and must facilitate access to its large markets for SAARC members.
Meanwhile, SAARC CCI SVP Iftikhar Malik said he is much optimistic that new government will take appropriate steps to push SAARC member countries on the track of success for greater prosperity and economic development in the region. DNA