Even for the seasoned exporter, Pakistan is not the easiest proposition due to the procedures that need to be followed, but with the right preparation and the assistance of UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) teams throughout UK and in Pakistan, both those experienced in overseas trade and those who are not, can successfully do business in Pakistan. You may be an exporter looking to sell directly to Pakistani customers or through an agent or distributor in the market. Alternatively, you may be planning to set up a representative office, joint venture or other form of permanent presence in Pakistan.
Pakistan’s total area is 796,095sq km, (source: Government of Pakistan) of which 3% is water. It is bordered by Iran in the South West, Afghanistan to the West and North, China to the North-East and India to the East. Its main geographical features are mountain peaks in the North, including K2; the second highest mountain in the world. There are two sea port cities: Karachi (with two ports – one in Karachi itself, the other at Port Qasim south of the city) in Sindh and Gwadar in Baluchistan.
The Central-East part of the country is comprised of the flat, fertile plains of the Indus Valley, which provide the bulk of agricultural produce of the country. To the West, dry rugged mountains dominate the landscape and the South-West is composed of mainly inhospitable plateaux. Barren deserts form much of the South-East and vast plains cover almost a third of the total land area.
Administratively the country is divided into four Provinces, namely Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa, Punjab, Sindh and Balochistan. As their name suggests the Federally Administered Tribal Areas have different governance arrangements. Punjab has a population of 100 million and contribution of approximately 60% towards the country’s GDP through its agriculture and textile industry. Lahore is its largest city and the hub of all activity. Karachi, in Sindh, is the business and financial capital; it is home to the majority of the multi-national and local corporations. Quetta is the largest city of Baluchistan with oil, gas and mining as its most important sectors. Peshawar is the main city and hub of all activity in Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa (KPK). KPK is known for its dry fruits, forestry and tourism.
About the guides
The main objective of this Doing Business in Pakistan Guide is to provide you with basic knowledge about Pakistan; an overview of its economy, business culture, potential opportunities and to identify the main issues associated with initial research, market entry, risk management and cultural and language issues.
We do not pretend to provide all the answers in the guide, but novice exporters in particular will find it a useful starting point.
This FREE guide is available in 4 formats:
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