‘United States keen on enhancing business with Pakistan’

US Embassy’s Commercial Counsellor Cheryl Dukelow has said that the United States was keenly interested in doing business with Pakistan and wants to help the Pakistani companies do business with companies in the US.Exchanging views at a meeting with the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI), she said that many US companies have been inquiring about business and investment opportunities in Pakistan from the commercial section of US Embassy and they were being fully assisted. “My job is to help the US companies find the right partner in Pakistan. We are facilitators not only to the US companies but also to Pakistani companies. We don’t want Pakistanis to get discouraged, disinterested or concerned in dealing with the US companies,” she added.

Cheryl Dukelow was accompanied by US Economic Officer Richard Rasmussen at the meeting while KCCI President Iftikhar Ahmed Vohra, Senior Vice President Ibrahim Kasumbi, former president Majyd Aziz and KCCI managing committee members were also present on the occasion.In order to enhance trade and business ties, Cheryl Dukelow advised KCCI to directly approach the peer chambers in US, who would surely like to enhance trade ties with Pakistan. In this regard, she assured to assist KCCI in case it faces any difficulty or does not receives reply from the companies based in US.

Commenting on improved trade relations between the two countries, she pointed out that US has witnessed over 20% increase in its exports to Pakistan from July 2014 to July 2015 as compared to the same period of the preceding year.Earlier, while welcoming the US commercial counsellor, the KCCI president briefed about the overall strength, membership base and structure of KCCI, which was actively working to resolve any issue being faced by the business and industrial community of Karachi.

Emphasising the need to raise bilateral trade between Pakistan and US, the KCCI president said that both countries must look for joint ventures in energy, education, training, infrastructure development, scientific research and technology transfer.

Commenting on Pak-US trade volume of more than $5 billion, he said that during Fiscal Year 2014-15, Pakistan exports to US were recorded at $3,958million whereas its imports stood at $1.197million, which indicates that trade between the two countries was largely in favour of Pakistan. However, the existing trade volume does not depict the real trade potential between the two countries, he opined, adding that efforts from both sides were needed to further raise the trade volume.

Speaking on the occasion, KCCI Senior Vice President Ibrahim Kasumbi appreciated the effective role being played by the officers deployed at the US Consulate’s Commercial Section in Karachi, who have been maintaining good liaison with KCCI and have been regularly visiting the chamber to take business community’s input on various economy and trade-related issues.

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