Local SMEs show promising trade prospects


KARACHI: International entities have displayed a strong interest in developing trade relationships with local Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) specializing in food and agriculture products.

In particular, traders from China, Indonesia, Belgium, and the Association of South East Nations (ASEAN) are looking to further trade prospects.

This development came after the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA) participated in the inaugural International Food and Agriculture Exhibition (FoodAg-2023) organized by the Trade Development Authority Pakistan (TDAP).

The exhibit, which took place between August 10 to 12, provided a unique platform for SMEDA to engage with over 500 international SMEs from 60 countries and interact with 15 regulatory and development bodies representing these nations.

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According to Business Recorder, SMEDA CEO Farhan Aziz Khawaja commended Pakistan’s commercial counsellors for facilitating networking with international SMEs and their respective development agencies.

Notably, discussions with the Indonesian and Chinese Embassies have paved the way for Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) at the secretariat level, aiming to bolster trade relations between SMEs. These agreements also aim to facilitate knowledge sharing on SME development strategies with SMEDA.

Additionally, a delegation of overseas Pakistani businessmen from Belgium has expressed interest in enhancing the export of rice and potatoes from Pakistan to Belgium, with the support of SMEDA. The delegation is currently conducting on-ground assessments, visiting areas such as Khanqah Dogran to inspect rice and potato fields, meet local farmers, and engage with SMEs specializing in these products.

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The efforts of the SMEDA team, under the leadership of CEO Khawaja, have been instrumental in fostering networking with international SME bodies. They also established an exclusive pavilion, featuring Agro-based SMEs from Sindh and Balochistan under the banner of GRASP (Green, Agri, and SME Promotion). As trade discussions progress, these initiatives are poised to open new avenues for growth and collaboration in the food and agriculture sector.

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