KARACHI - Consul General of Thailand in Karachi, Suwat Kaew Sook has said that Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Pakistan and Thailand was likely to be finalized by the end of 2016 which would facilitate trade and help in improving the existing trade ties between the two countries.

Exchanging views with KCCI office bearers and Managing Committee members during his visit to KCCI, Thai Consul General said that the business communities of both the country will come more close to each other particularly after signing of the FTA, said a statement here Friday.

“We want to do business and cooperate with you as there is a lot of room for improving the existing trade volume which is now above $1 billion”, he added.

President KCCI Younus Muhammad Bashir, Senior Vice President KCCI Zia Ahmed Khan, Vice President KCCI Muhammad Naeem Sharif, Chairman of Diplomatic Mission & Embassies Liaison Sub-Committee KCCI Muhammad Ibrahim Kasumbi, Trade Advisor of Thai Consulate Arif Suleman and KCCI Managing Committee members were also present at the meeting.

Thai Consul General said that Thailand and Pakistan can cooperate in various sectors of the economy particularly in the agriculture and tourism.

He invited the business community of Karachi to benefit from the strategic location of Thailand which can act as bridge to access Burma, Vietnam, Cambodia and many other countries in the region while the business community of Thailand can also benefit from Pakistan’s strategic location.

Extending full support and cooperation to the business and industrial community of Karachi, he assured to fully facilitate the businessmen and industrialists who were willing to visit Thailand.

“If any one has issues in obtaining Thai visas or any other issue, the same must be promptly conveyed to us so that we could bring these issues to the notice of Thai government with a view to get them resolved”, he added. Earlier, President KCCI Younus Muhammad Bashir, in his welcome address, stated that Pakistan and Thailand maintained sound bilateral trade relations.

He said that there was great potential to enhance bilateral trade, investment and cooperation between the two countries. In this regard, the pre-feasibility studies have already been completed by both sides. Pak-Thai trade volume currently stands at around $1 billion which was aimed to be taken up to $2 billion in the next five years, he adde.

d and extended full support and cooperation on behalf of the entire business and industrial community of Karachi towards enhancing trade and building strong linkages with the business and industrial community of Thailand.