Chairman of National Business Group of FPCCI, President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum and All Karachi Industrial Alliance, and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain on Wednesday said Russia and western countries continued to trade during high tensions during the cold war, therefore, we should also start trade with all the neighbours.
We should not compromise our principled stance but start business as the issue of Kashmir cannot be resolved unless Pakistan become a significant economic power so that no country including India will not risk relations with Islamabad, he said.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that all the diplomatic and political moves have failed to resolve the issue of Kashmir and war is out of options leaving economic ties the only option to improve things.
Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that political tensions have dragged Saarc region down with frictions between India and Pakistan as its core reason.
The negative attitude of India and the arms race has pushed millions below the poverty line in the region while the majority of world’s poor reside in this region.
The quickest way to lift millions out of poverty is to resolve political issues and start trading in this least integrated areas Pakistan cannot remain unconcerned with the neighbours as it has not helped in the last seventy years.
He said that China has inked a deal with Iran to invest 400 billion dollars which will revolutionise the economy of later.
Iranian oil and gas will be provided to China through the Caspian Sea and Kazakhstan while a pipeline is also on the cards. A land corridor will also be established from the Persian Gulf to the Black Sea while a railway network will also support the initiative.
These initiatives will increase presence of Iran in Afghanistan, Central Asia and Russia therefore Pakistan should realise the emerging opportunities and increase trade relations with Iran, plan a corridor and push gas imports from Iran, he said.