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US investors briefed on economic performance

Daily Times, Pakistan

29 September 2004

US investors briefed on economic performance

WASHINGTON: Humayun Akhtar Khan, federal commerce minister, who arrived here Monday from New York on a week-long visit said that Pakistan offers lucrative investment and trade opportunities and urged US businessmen to take a full advantage of the country’s conducive environment.

He said this while addressing a luncheon meeting at the US Chamber of Commerce hosted by the US-Pakistan Business Council. Referring to the progressing economic environment of Pakistan, the minister said the things have settled down politically and democracy and parliamentary practices were very much functional.

He said, Pakistan today offers a lot of opportunities for investors for investment.

Mr Khan said the present government has enforced a lot of reforms in the economic field and these reforms have borne fruits and referred to the favourable economic indicators that have been achieved. In this context, he particularly cited the attainment of 6.4 percent growth rate, which is a record achievement.

“We need an open market access in US and Europe,” the minister stated. “We will be discussing with US officials on Tuesday, the matter of intellectual and proprietary rights.”

Besides, more market access to Pakistan would also be discussed. He also highlighted the travel advisory issue, for those coming to Pakistan and coming out of it, in order to improve trade with Pakistan. “We have to project the image of Pakistan so that it becomes the first investment destination for promising firms and entrepreneurs.”

A high-level delegation is accompanying the federal commerce minister which includes Jehangir Bashar, chairman Board of Investment (BoI) and Tasneem Noorani, secretary commerce

In his remarks, Mr Bashar highlighted the investment climate in Pakistan. Mr Bashar briefed the participants of the attractive investment climate in Pakistan, and identified the fields like power, oil and gas, and I.T. Ashley Wills, assistant secretary US Trade Representative, also appreciated Pakistan’s role in global economic environment.

Earlier in her welcome address, E. Gomez, chief of the US-Pakistan Business Council, said with new economic reforms, Pakistan has been providing a solid framework for investments in Pakistan. “Pakistan economy is growing at full pace, and the US companies can take fuller advantage of the liberal opportunities, and invest more in Pakistan.”

He said Pakistan has taken a leap ahead in respect of consideration and soon adoption of intellectual proper rights legislation which is now being considered by the national parliament.

During the visit, the minister is scheduled to hold talks with high US officials on boosting of bilateral trade and investment relations between the two countries. app