A delegation of SAARC Chamber Pakistan chapter will participate in the forthcoming 3-days “6th SAARC Business Leaders Conclave” being held from March 16 at Kathmandu, Nepal to explore the investment avenues and promote trade among member countries.The theme of the conclave is “Unleashing Shared Prosperity through Economic Integrity”, and over,500 leading business leaders, eminent international experts and distinguished dignitaries from private and public sectors will grace the occasion.Chairing a meeting of the SAARC Chamber Pakistan chapter, its Vice President, Iftikhar Ali Malik said this mega event will bring together the region’s economic and business thinkers, doers and change makers on a one common platform.The conclave would help to discuss, debate and evolve solutions and generate opportunities to take South Asia on the path of shared prosperity through economic integration. He said that event will also feature interactive discussion and deliberations between torchbearers and influential leaders of South Asian economy.
He further said that they would bring the issue of reduction of their respective sensitive lists under discussion so that volume of trade would be increased manifold times under SAFTA in South Asian region.He said Pakistan under the dynamic leadership of Prime Minister ShahidKhaqanAbbasi would continue its work for boosting trade in the region and would remove all hurdles in the way of free trade. He further said that Pakistan is keen to increase trade activities with other countries.
The bi-annual event of the SAARC Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SAARC-CCI) is going to be held in Nepal for the second time and thegovernment is going to host the regional event jointly with SAARC-CCI, according to Suraj Vaidya, president of SAARC-CCI.Former president of India, Pranab Mukherjee, has been invited to deliver a keynote speech in the conclave. Mukherjee was the host of thesecond SAARC business leaders’ conclave. Former president of Sri Lanka Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga has also been invited to address the conclave.Top-notch businesspeople from the region will be addressing the conclave.
India has so far conducted this event three times, and Nepal and Sri Lanka have organised it once so far. “SAARC Business Leaders’ Conclave was supposed to be held in Pakistan along with the SAARC summit, but it could not happen as the SAARC summit has been postponed,” said Vaidya.The South Asian Free Trade Area (SAFTA) meeting is also scheduled towards the end of the conclave. The commerce ministers of the region are going to meet after four years to discuss unresolved issues to bring the SAFTA agreement into effect. There will be bilateral meetings on the sidelines of the event.
“Our intention in organising such events is to hold discussions on major issues for unleashing the potential of shared prosperity of the region,” said Vaidya.One-fourth of the world’s population lives in South Asia and it has a huge number of youth population.“However, the South Asian nations are rigid in promoting intra-regional trade and investment, and such rigid policies need to be opened up to take forward South Asia as a vibrant region,” Vaidya added.
The World Bank will provide support to the event as a knowledge partner. The event will provide a common platform to South Asian think-tanks, policymakers, and businesspeople. They are slated to hold intensive interactions on various issues to discuss, debate and come up with solutions and opportunities to take South Asia on the path of shared prosperity through economic integration.


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