An MOU was signed between Optima Integration Group (OIG) headquartered in Shenzhen and AsiaPak Investments headquartered in Hong Kong, China to set up an end-to-end supply chain for agricultural products, especially animal protein products, which will be produced in Pakistan and transported to China for consumption, Gwadar Pro reported on Tuesday. According to the MOU, the two sides will complete feasibility studies in the first 2 months and they will start executing the project within the first 6 months.

The signing ceremony was witnessed by Pakistani Minister of Board of Investments, Chaudhry Salik Hussain. He congratulated the partnership and was glad to see China’s interests in Pakistan’s agriculture and livestock sector, especially in the fish and seafood industry.

“Food processing is one of the priority sectors of Pakistan, where extensive and continuous focus is required, and it is closely linked with the logistics sector, which is also nominated as a priority sector for Pakistan.

The validation process of such a project will enable Pakistan to be part of the global supply chain. BOI is always committed to facilitating China-Pakistan cooperation.” the minister said.

On the occasion, Shaheryar Chishty, CEO of AsiaPak, mentioned that China imports more than $150 billion food annually, out of which only $500 million is exported from Pakistan, and most of them is fruits and vegetables. Pak-China friendship is translating into economic benefits.

The CEO OIG added that the project objective is to increase export of animal protein, including fish, beef and mutton to China. “This project begins with the pilot of fish export, and will expand after feasibility studies in Gwadar. Subsequently, we will expand the scope to include beef and mutton processing in our project,” he noted.

With a population of 1.4 billion in the growing and upgrading consumer demands, China has a huge market potential, especially in the food industry. Pakistan has a long history and unique advantages in agriculture.

The two sides will work together to enhance B2B cooperation between private enterprises of the two countries under the second phase of CPEC to modernize Pakistan’s agricultural sector.

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