An Iranian delegation Monday visited Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry (LCCI) to explore possibilities of joint ventures (JVs) between private sector of the two countries in iron and steel, home textiles, dried fruits, livestock, healthcare products, cables, construction, confectionery, foodstuffs and other sectors of the economy. LCCI Senior Vice President Mian Rehman Aziz presented the address of welcome while Vice President Haris Ateeq, former Senior Vice President Amjad Ali Jawa, EC members Mian Ateequr Rehman, Chaudhry Wajid, Shamim Akhter, Shahzad Butt and Ali Afzal, former EC members Aqib Asif, Fiaz Haider, Hafi Asif Sehar and Kamal Mahmood Amjad Mian also spoke on the occasion. Head of the delegation Saeed Manawi said that in order to increase the two-way trade volume, we must ensure the timely exchange of trade and investment related information about each other’s markets. He said that Pakistan and Iran have deep fraternal relations and therefore these relations should be reflected in the trade as well. He said that both countries are resource-rich and there is a lot of scope to boost mutual trade and economic ties. LCCI Senior Vice President Mian Rehman Aziz Chan said that the importance of such interaction is hard to be measured. It provides a unique opportunity to directly interact with each other, which consequently lead to strengthening of long lasting trade and economic relations. He said that Pakistan and Iran share deep religious, historic and cultural bond. He said, “We proudly recognize our bilateral relations with Iran as time-tested and based on good faith.” He said that the LCCI President Mian Nauman Kabir led a Trade Delegation to Iran in February 2022. The delegation had great interactions with the key representatives of public and private sectors in Tehran, Mashhad and Esfahan. “It was a great experience altogether and I am very happy to receive the Iranian counterparts in Lahore Chamber today,” he added. He said the people of Iran take great pride while expressing their feelings and thoughts about their homeland. Iran’s roots as a distinctive culture and society date back to the Achaemenian period, which began in 550 BC. Iran was a culturally diverse society, and inter-ethnic relations are generally amicable. It has a long history of scholarship that has created a rich culture of art, literature, poetry, music, cuisine and architecture, he added. Mian Rehman Aziz Chan informed the house that respected Iranian delegates belong to important cities of Iran including Tehran, Mashhad, Esfahan, Yazd and Sirjan. They have visited Pakistan to display their products in 3-Day Business Opportunities Exhibition starting from 24th May 2022 in Lahore being jointly organized by Aresa International Event & Trade Management (Iran) and Bukhari Group of Companies (Pakistan). For the purpose of creating strong business networking, there will also be B2B meetings during the exhibition and ‘We look forward to seeing you at the venue along with our members.’ “We are glad to know that today’s delegation of Iranian businessmen represent very important sectors of economy including iron & steel, home textiles, dry fruits, livestock, healthcare products, cables, construction, confectionery and food items etc. and they are interested to collaborate with their Pakistani counterparts”, He added. Mian Rehman Aziz Chan said that both the countries have large domestic markets and unique geo-strategic competitive advantage. He said that joint efforts are needed in order to utilize the potential opportunities available in each other’s economy. LCCI Vice President Haris Ateeq said that there are some bottlenecks in the way of increasing trade between two countries, which are required to be addressed on priority basis. We would recommend the Government of Iran to open specialized financial institutions in Pakistan, which can facilitate trade between the two countries. Since there are diversified Iranian members in the delegation, so we will certainly like to listen to their proposals as to how we together can achieve better results with joint efforts.