Islamabad, 28 Oct 2021 : The Indonesian Embassy in Islamabad held an “Appreciation Night”to pay tribute to the business community and friends of Indonesia and ASEAN in recognition of their meritorious contribution and collaboration with the Indonesian Embassyin enhancing bilateral cooperation, especially in the domain of trade and investment.
The event was yet another activity being ¬organized by the Embassy in commemoration of the 76th Indonesian Independence Day and the 54th Anniversary of the ASEAN.
Federal Secretary of Commerce Muhamad Sualeh A. Farauqui was the chief guest on the occasion. Heads of ASEAN Missions in Islamabad, Diplomats, President Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI), Muhammad ShakeelMunir, President Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI), Nadeem A. Rauf and President of Pakistan- ASEAN Business Forum, Zafar Bahtawari and the business community and “friends of Indonesia” from the twin cities attended the reception in high number.
The reception which was organized at the luxury farm house of Khalid Farooq Qazi, a Pakistani businessman, began with the playing of the national anthems of Indonesia and Pakistan and the ASEAN Hymn which was followed by the cake cutting ceremony performed by the Indonesian Ambassador Adam Tugiowhile joined by the Chief guest, Heads of ASEAN Missions and other guests of honor.
The event also featured the promotion of Indonesian culture by presenting performances of NandakGanjen Dance, TopengIreng Dance and pencaksilat attractions as well as promoting culinary delights and videos about Indonesia and ASEAN.
In his remarks, the Ambassador Adam M. Tugio expressed his sincere gratitude and appreciation to the distinguished guests for their contribution and role in improving investment and trade relations between Indonesia-Pakistan and ASEAN-Pakistan.
He observed with great pleasure that amid COVID-19 driven global economic recession the economic and trade relations between Indonesia and Pakistan have continued to show a positive trend.
The Ambassador said that the development of a beneficial and comprehensive ASEAN-Pakistan cooperation has special importance considering the emergence of geo-economic and geo-strategic regional alliances. ASEAN countries, he continued, wanted a partnership with Pakistan through joint ventures and increased interaction in the fields of scientific research, education, information technology and agriculture in order to strengthen ASEAN-Pakistan cooperation in the future.
He also shared several strategies to strengthen cooperation with ASEAN countries, including trade and investment cooperation. He noted that China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project offered great opportunities for trade and investment as it could potentially develop Pakistan for the ASEAN member countries to make Pakistan as aneconomic hub for the Central Asia, Middle East and the Western China. Like other countries, Indonesia also has an interest in exploring potential cooperation within the framework of CPEC through strengthening trade cooperation at the bilateral level along with ASEAN member countries through engagements with the stakeholders and business actors including the Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Various efforts had been made by the Indonesian Embassy to improve economic and trade relations between the two countries including increasing and diversifying Indonesian products to Pakistani market. One of the breakthroughs was made when Embassy collaborated with the E-Commerce company Pakistan Gateway to hold a series of Indonesia-Pakistan Virtual Trade Expo 2021. The success of the exhibition was reflected by the enthusiasm of Indonesian exporter companies, which are mostly SMEs.
It is worth noting despite COVID-19 pandemic the level of business interactions between Indonesian-Pakistani was successfully maintained. The trade volume actually appreciated and registered an increase of 8% compared to 2019, reaching USD 2.5 billion with a surplus for Indonesia of USD 2.1 billion.
The great interest and enthusiasm shown by the Pakistani business community in the Virtual Trade Expo Indonesia 2021 it was expected that trade volume will continue to increase. Various technology based innovative initiatives and virtual exhibitions have been instrumental in not only in maintaining but also enhancing the trade activities between Indonesia and Pakistan.