Ambassador of the Republic of Algeria Mr Brahim Romani and CEO & Chairman of Pakistan Observer Mr Faisal Zahid Malik discussed bilateral relations in trade, energy and expansion of media linkages between two countries.—PO photo by Sh Arif
Pakistan and Algeria share deep, friendly ties characterized by mutual respect, will to expand economic connections and collaboration at various multilateral forums. These views were expressed by Ambassador of the Republic of Algeria Mr Brahim Romani while talking to CEO & Chairman of Pakistan Observer Mr Faisal Zahid Malik who called on him to re-emphasize Pakistan Observer’s support to sustainable and durable businesses (b-to-b) and people-to-people (p-to-p) ties between Pakistan and Algeria.
Ambassador Romani recalled Pakistan was one of the first countries to recognize the provisional government of the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria in exile in 1958 adding the Government of Pakistan had wholeheartedly supported the Algerian struggle for independence from France. Relations between Algeria and Pakistan are excellent in diverse sectors, the envoy said, adding there existed a strong desire at the leadership as well as the business community level to enhance these relations particularly in trade and investment. The existing bilateral trade volume is around US$90 million at present and can be increased to around US$1 billion if consistent efforts are made by the two sides.
Both Pakistan and Algeria have convergence of views on issues of international importance and there are two structured bilateral institutional mechanisms envisaging cooperation in these areas: Bilateral Political Consultations (BPC) established in 2001 and Joint Economic Commission (JEC) set up in 1987. Pakistan, he said, should look for the ‘out of the box’ solutions to counter challenges to its economy and trade with Africa can be a significant development in this regard.
The African market is full of promise for the Pakistani investors and businessmen particularly in the pharmaceutical, textile, agriculture, rice, wheat and cement sectors. Establishment of new commercial sections in Africa can help a great deal in this regard. Mr Faisal Zahid Malik while appreciating the Algerian envoy’s views said the Pakistani government was determined to facilitate the Algerian investors to explore multiple business opportunities and a high-level business and investment-friendly body Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC) has already been established to restore investors’ confidence.
It is the highest business and investment promotional forum that enjoys the support of both the civilian and the military leadership, he said. He also suggested exchange of media delegations between the two countries to cement the bond of friendship between Algeria and Pakistan. Mr Brahim Romani said that his country wanted to develop strong trade and economic ties with Pakistan. Algeria, he said occupied an important geographic location with abundant natural resources including mines like iron, lithium, uranium etc and the Pakistani investors should explore these investment opportunities. They should also export their products to the huge African market. A delegation of Algeria would also visit Pakistan to attend exhibitions in Lahore and Karachi.
From Pakistan’s perspective, the country can focus on attracting investment from Algeria in cotton, textiles, construction material, chemicals, fertilizers, pharmaceuticals, aluminum, plastic goods, electric & electronic items, food products and others. The ambassador also appreciated the role of Pakistan Observer and its leadership in promoting and highlighting bilateral trade and other potential areas for investment between the countries.