By Mudassir Raja
Members of Pakistani business community and professionals working in Qatar recently held a gathering at the embassy of Pakistan and discussed how bilateral business between the two countries could be increased.
A good number of people from different fields attended the gathering that was hosted by the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA).
The community discussed at length how business between Qatar and Pakistan can be increased. They identified the areas where business dealings could be improved and how to go about it.
The guest of honour on the occasion was Farhan Samiullah, PIA’s general manager marketing. Also in attendance was Pakistani ambassador Shahzad Ahmed. PIA’s staff in Qatar and their visiting colleagues presented a souvenir to the ambassador as a goodwill gesture.
Speaking on the occasion, Samiullah said that he was very happy to meet Pakistani expatriate community in Qatar and especially the business community. He said that he was thankful to members of the Pakistan business community for gathering at the embassy and he appreciated the role and services that they had been playing for promoting good ties and increasing business with Qatar.
He said that he would like to get suggestions from the business community on how to further enhance business ties with Qatar and how the PIA could be of help in this regard.
Khalid Hamid, PIA’s country manager in Qatar, told Community that the purpose of the gathering was to let the visiting PIA officials meet with the business community. He said that the gathering was primarily a kind of get-together where the business people got a chance to share their views with the PIA staff about how the volume of business between Pakistan and Qatar could be increased.
Khalid, who is also known for being a part of Pakistan’s hockey team that won gold medal in the 1984 Olympics, said that people from different business areas such as food items suppliers, restaurants, and construction work were present at the gathering. He noted that the discussion was very useful and the suggestions given could be very helpful in enhancing the current volume of trade between the two countries.
Talking to Community, Parvvez Iqbal, who founded Gulf-Pak Food Traders Company, said, “It was a good opportunity for Pakistani business community to discuss different ideas and possibilities, especially in the current scenario, which gives opportunities to Pakistani enterprises in the country to increase the volume of business.”
He added, “Qatar is very close to Pakistan. Items such as fresh meat, poultry, vegetables, and eggs can easily be supplied by Pakistan. Such kinds of food items have short shelf lives and [Pakistan can easily] maintain a regular supply. PIA can also help in the quick supply of fresh food items from Pakistan.”
Ahmed Hussain, ex-president of Pakistan Qatar Business Forum, told Community, “It was a good opportunity for Pakistani businesspersons to discuss different ideas to increase their businesses and explore new avenues of growth at the gathering.”
The Pakistan Qatar Business Forum representative added, “We have been having different meetings and sessions for last many months about how to increase bilateral trade with Qatar. In a recent meeting of the forum, we discussed that different food items, construction material, and medicines could be brought from Pakistan to cater to the demand in Qatar. It is a good time for the Pakistani expatriates to come forward. We have also been working on possible investment opportunities by Qatari businesspersons in Pakistan in areas such as agriculture, hospitality, housing, and infrastructure.”
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