Former Afghan president Hamid Karzai has invited Pakistani businessmen to explore the Afghan market, which offers tremendous opportunities to foreign investors.
He said Afghanistan has the lowest taxes in the region and the Pakistani investors will get land free of cost. He was talking to a visiting business delegation led by United Business Group (UBG) Chairman and SAARC Chamber of Commerce Vice President Iftikhar Ali Malik.
The deputy commerce minister of Afghanistan, TDAP CEO SM Muneer, SAARC Chamber President Suraj Vaidya, Zubair Tufail, SM Naseer, Zafar Bakhtwari, Zubair Ahmed Malik, Gulzar Feroze, Malik Sohail and others were also present on the occasion, said a press statement issued on Wednesday.
Karzai said that Afghanistan and Pakistan are large trading partners and that Pakistan has always helped their Afghan brethren. Millions of Afghans are still living in Pakistan and earning a respectable living for which we are thankful to Pakistan, he added.
The former Afghan president said the situation in Afghanistan has improved, there is no problem of energy scarcity and the Afghan side can guarantee security.
“We have ensured an enabling environment, cheap labour, abundant natural resources that can be exported and world class agriculture products awaiting investment in sectors like packaging and processing.
Iftikhar Ali Malik, SM Muneer and Zubair Tufail said on the occasion that the Pakistani businessmen are looking into opportunities for investment and joint ventures in sectors like agriculture, mining, cement production, textiles, telecommunication, IT, chemicals etc. They said that issues impeding trade include lack of banking facilities, proper payment mechanism, dispute resolution and taxation.
A free trade zone in FATA near the Afghan border will help bring people of the two brotherly countries together and settle misgivings, they underlined. The delegation is also scheduled to meet Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, CEO of Afghan National Unity Government Abdullah Abdullah, and deputy minister for Foreign Affairs, and leading businessmen.