Ethopian Ambassador to Pakistan Jemal Beker Abdula said on Saturday the role of academia was important to strengthen people-to-people relations between Ethiopia and Pakistan. Addressing a seminar titled “Explore Emerging Giant of Ethiopia/Africa for Trade and Investment Opportunities” held at the University of Sialkot (USKT), the Ambassador urged the academia to play its full role to bring the people of Ethiopia and Pakistan closer to the bilateral relations. He said that educational institutions had produced many such intelligent people, and created such ideas in them, which had not only contributed to the betterment of society but also kept the world connected. The Ethopian Ambassador said that people of Pakistan were very hospitable which he had experienced himself. Both countries could move forward together for the welfare of common man, he added. He said that Ethopia formally known as Abyssinia was remembered as Habsha in Islamic history. The land of Hazrat Bilal Habshi and first homage to migrated Muslims where King Najashi provided Muslims protection and livelihood. The Ethiopian envoy stressed for promoting educational cooperation between the two countries which was crucial to enhance people-to-people contact between the two countries. Similarly, he said that it was very important for the business community to connect the two countries, which had vast potential for bilateral trade in various sectors of the economy including manufacturing, agriculture, agro-processing, textiles, cement, chemicals, technology, fertilizers, steel and pharmaceuticals. The ambassador said another area where both countries could enhance collaboration was climate change which had recently brought a flash flood to the shores of Pakistan and inflicted colossal damage. He vowed to make all out sincere efforts to boost mutual trade ties between Ethiopia and Pakistan, saying that time had ripen to further strengthen mutual trade ties. The ambassador assured all possible assistance and facilitation to businessmen. Jamal Baker said that Pakistan needed to expand its footprint in Africa, especially Ethiopia, which was the gateway to the continent of 1.4 billion people. He said the embassy had planned a trade delegation for Pakistan, which would leave for Addis Ababa on March 5, in this regard. The Ambassador said that facilities of discounted airfare and accommodation, business-to-business and government-to-business meetings as well as a lavish reception by the country’s leadership and cultural nights would be given to the trade delegation.