LAHORE - Senior Australian Trade Commissioner for South Asia Region Patrick Kearins has said that a huge potential exists to enhance Pak-Australia cooperation in the areas of Energy, Livestock, Agriculture, Mining, Advance Manufacturing and Education.

Patrick Kearins was addressing the LCCI Members the here at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Tuesday. LCCI President Farooq Iftikhar, Vice President Mian Abuzar Shad, former President Mian Muzaffar Ali, Executive Committee Members Mian Zahid Javaid, Tanvir Ahmad Sufi and Mehmood Ghaznvi also spoke on the occasion.

Patrick Kearins said that Pakistani businessmen must avail cutting-edge Australian technology for food processing and dairy sector as Australia has proven capability in these areas. He said that the Commission at present was working in three areas including Trade, Investment and Education. He said that assistance was being provided in Dairy, Food, Mining, Oil and Gas and Water Management. Australia has certified Mining experts and one of the best mining facilities and techniques in the world. He said that both the government and the private sector could avail these opportunities.

The Australian diplomat said that Australia had formed Growth and Emerging Market Group that includes South Asia, South America and Central European States. He said Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka were included in the group and Australia would continue to work with these countries in Trade, Investment and Education sectors. He said that the Australian Trade Commission could help identify international partners for those Pakistani businesses through tailored industry intelligence that wanted to go global.

Speaking on the occasion, the LCCI President Farooq Iftikhar suggested the visiting diplomat that market surveys should be conducted to explore the potential areas of trade. Similarly, road shows, catalogue exhibitions and trade fairs could be other options to display the product range available for trade.

The LCCI President said that the Dairy and Livestock sector was growing well in Pakistan and there was still a tremendous potential of growth which could be explored through joint ventures between Pakistani and Australian businessmen. Similarly animal fattening projects were also picking up in Pakistan and the animals were being imported from Australia. Other important sectors are fresh fruit juices and beverages which promise excellent return on investments.

The LCCI President said that currently, Pakistan was in dire need of foreign direct investment while the government of Pakistan had also offered a lot of incentives for foreign investors. The potential gains in sectors like energy, mining, agro-based industry etc were immense. The Australian investors are needed to be motivated to consider these sectors for the mutual benefits of both the countries.

The LCCI President also called for measures to expedite exchange of important information related to trade queries.