KARACHI (PR): Haji Fazal Kadir Khan Sherani, President FPCCI has strongly opposed the proposal to form an India-Pakistan Joint Business Council which was discussed during the recently concluded Commerce Secretary Level talks held between India and Pakistan with the aim of maintaining regular and sustained dialogue between the two countries. In this respect FPCCI, has informed the Ministry of Commerce that an effective India Pakistan Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IPCCI) is already functioning under mutual recognition of the national chambers of both countries, i.e., FPCCI and FICCI, which regularly conducts activities to improve bilateral trade and business relations between both countries. In the presence of IPCCI, there is therefore no need for the formation of a parallel Joint Business Council, which will only create misunderstanding and confusion among the business community of both the countries.
The President FPCCI clarified that IPCCI was formed under an MoU signed on April 10, 1999 between FPCCI and FICCI; the national apex bodies of both countries. Since its establishment, IPCCI has been playing a significant role in forging a strong economic partnership between Pakistan and India through encouraging the private sectors of the two countries to take the lead in driving the bilateral relationship by defining a clear roadmap and removing all roadblocks.
He said that Mr. S.M. Muneer, who is the President of IPCCI, has contributed significantly towards normalizing bilateral relations pertaining to trade and economic affairs ever since the establishment of IPCCI. Mr. Muneer is a leading industrialist and a well-respected person on both sides of the Indo-Pak border who knows very well the problems faced by the business community in conducting cross-border trade, and his recommendations are given due recognition by both countries.
He further stated that under the leadership of Mr. S. M. Muneer, IPCCI is not only playing a vital role in facilitating business community, but it is also providing strong inputs and feedback for improving the trade relations and removing trade and investment hurdles. Last year, IPCCI organized a very successful conference at Karachi , which was attended by a large number of delegates from both countries. This conference made fruitful and meaningful recommendations for the promotion of bilateral trade and removing Non Tariff Barriers (NTBs).
The President FPCCI urged the Government of Pakistan to strengthen IPCCI’s role further, and to provide moral support to enhance its function, instead of venturing into forming another body/forum charged with a task which is already being performed by IPCCI.