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Pakistan and Italian government are working to increase Business

Islamabad: 16 October2021: Pakistan’s exports to Italy as well as workers' remittances continue to register record growth. Despite the lingering Covid pandemic and the challenging market conditions, the latest quarterly economic indicators have been most impressive.Pakistani worker's remittances from Italy increased 66.5% while Pakistan’s exports to Italy increased by 34% during the first quarter of Financial Year 2021-22 ( July-Sept).What brings even more promise to the future of bilateral commercial relations is the fact that many new investment initiatives, especially related to the energy and transport sectors, are also in the pipeline.Pakistani worker's remittances from Italy which have shown record growth over the last many quarters remain on a steep upward trajectory. The 66.5% growth witnessed in the first quarter of FY 2021-22 is many times higher than the overall national growth of 12.5% in workers remittances seen during the same period. Talking to the media, Pakistan’s envoy to Italy, Ambassador Jauhar Saleem said that Italy has emerged as Pakistan`s largest source of workers remittances from the European Union and the second largest in Europe after the United Kingdom. Applauding the 200,000 strong Pakistani diasporas in Italy which have been contributing positively not only to the Italian economy, but also has been a source of pride and support for the mother country, he noted that legalization of thousands of undocumented Pakistani workers through Italian amnesty scheme, the inclusion of Pakistan in Italian Seasonal Work Visa Program, State Bank of Pakistan‘s consumer-friendly financial products and programs, and Pakistan Embassy’s awareness campaign to promote formal channels of remittances have been the main factors driving the growth of the unprecedented remittance from Italy.The Ambassador also shared that given the improved market conditions x Recalling his recent meetings with the President of the richest state in Italy, Lombardia, and the President of the Milan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, he stated that there was keen interest in Italy for expanding economic ties with Pakistan. He mentioned that last month the embassy coordinated the visit of a 30 member Pakistani delegation from the leather sector, that, according to Pakistan Tanners Association, inked business contracts worth €11.9 million with Italian companies. While a delegation of 16 Pakistani companies from leather garments and sportswear will be visiting Italy next month. A substantial increase in business deals is expected as a result of the enhanced Pak-Italy B2B engagements.Ambassador Saleem shared that Italian investors are also in negotiations with Pakistani companies for investment in the energy and transport sectors of Pakistan. As the Italian market recovers from pandemic-related economic losses, Italian investors are regaining the confidence to resume expansion of international operations. Italy suffered a massive GDP contraction of 9.6% in 2020. However, GDP is expected to increase by 4.7% in 2021 and by 4.4% in 2022.The Ambassador also shared that the embassy is taking special initiatives to promote the flow of tourism between Pakistan and Italy.

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