Commerce minister says centre will help British and Pakistani companies develop business links to increase trade
KARACHI: The launch of the first British Business Centre (BBC) in Karachi heralds a brighter, more peaceful and prosperous Pakistan, said Commerce Minister Khurrum Dastgir Khan at the British Deputy High Commission.
He was performing the opening of the above mentioned centre that would work with the UK Trade and Investment to help British and Pakistani companies develop and build business links and opportunities to help increase trade between the two countries.
In his address, the minister said that this centre was a commitment at the highest level between Pakistan and UK's leadership to form an ever-closer bond between the two countries.
He said that at the beginning of 2016, despite our challenges that still remain, Pakistan is a much more peaceful country than it was even a year or two years ago. He also declared that the economy of Pakistan has stabilised and this stability is now being recognised internationally, providing firm foundation on which to grow.
The minister was optimistic that this business centre would also contribute towards more investment and growth in the country's economy. He also pointed out that the government led by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in the last two and a half years has put in place arrangements and projects, which will help the country soon overcome energy shortages.
Dastgir said, "We foresee that two binding constraints on Pakistan's economic growth - extremism and terrorism as well as energy shortages, would be broken away to allow the country to begin growing again and become prosperous.
He also pointed out that Pakistan is reconnecting with the world and that this business centre is a manifestation of such a reconnection. As the part of the re-connection, he also mentioned the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).
Pakistan, the minister added, is making a direct outreach to its neighbours particularly to Afghanistan, Iran and Central Asia. He said that this connectivity between Pakistan and the world, which is now improving, would also be a driver of our growth in the years ahead.
Dastgir said that Pakistan seems to be on course to have in 2018 its second constitutional and peaceful transfer of power. These, he added, should give us hope and confidence regarding the opportunities for growth and prosperity as well as peace.
He said he was delighted that the people and government of UK are our partners and companions in the road to prosperity and peace, as democratically elected Pakistan strides confidently into the future.
The British Deputy High Commissioner in Karachi John A Tucknott said on the occasion that UK and Pakistan already enjoy a strong relationship. He said that the British Business Centre would help deepen that relationship in the key areas of prosperity. "Its goal is to contribute to an increase in bilateral trade and investment in line with the commitments given by Prime Ministers David Cameron and Nawaz Sharif when they met in London in April 2014," he added.