Swedish brand IKEA is to officially commence operations in Pakistan, with the multinational conglomerate’s Dieter Mettke as head of operations in the country.

Dieter Mettke met with Pakistani ambassador to Germany, Dr Mohammad Faisal, on Tuesday to consolidate this venture. Mettke has been the head of retail operations in several parts of the world including the United States.

IKEA plans to operate from three big cities; Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad, with its one authorized seller already operating in Pakistan. JustIKEA.com offers IKEA products in Karachi while several home decoration outlets are already displaying its furniture in the major cities of Pakistan.

The multinational company has a number of sourcing centers in Pakistan, while local textile mills, like Al-Karam textiles, have been working with IKEA since several decades.

Pakistani high-end furniture market has been dominated by local players Interwood and Habitt, which have been frequently dubbed as Pakistan’s versions of IKEA.

Pakistani ambassador Dr. Faisal, who was also spokesperson for the foreign ministry, tweeted about his meeting with an official from IKEA, tagging the Prime Minister, the Foreign Minister and the Trade Minister in his tweet. As a result of his significant number of followers on the social media platform, his tweet got viral. In a surprising turn of events, however, he deleted his post from the site, although several had already taken screenshots.

However, it later turned out that IKEA had no plan to enter Pakistani markets and the Pakistani envoy jumped the gun when he tweeted that the company would commence operations in the country.

Hamza Habib is a senior journalist and former editor of correspondent.pk who has previously worked for leading newspapers and TV networks of the country. He mainly writes on the economy and political issues.


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