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Chief of Political and Economic Section, US Consulate General Lahore, Ann Mason has said that Pakistan and America are enjoying sustained and mutually beneficial relations despite of temporary political recession and a visible improvement in bilateral relation is expected in the coming days. Addressing the business community in Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FCCI) here Thursday, she told that America is investing in many countries including Pakistan and she is happy to know that Pakistan cherished from the trade with USA.
She termed agriculture as an integral and major part of Pak economy and told that America will continue to assist Pakistan within the given circumstances. However, some seed manufacturing companies have reservations and business community must take measures to redress their genuine grievances to take benefit from latest American technology of high yielding American seeds.
She termed M-3 Industrial Estate an opportunity for investors to contribute their role in the overall development of Faisalabad and told that she would also convince Americans to invest in it. She also assured to provide cooperation in human resource development in Pakistan. Earlier, in his address of welcome President FCCI, Syed Zia Alumdar Hussain told that FCCI has 7,000 members within its folds and is trying to raise their issues with a clear objective to resolve the same at federal, provincial and local levels for the last 44 year.
He told that textile is the real economic strength of this metropolis. "However, it has witnessed a phenomenal diversification with the addition of many new sectors," he told and added that in textile, it has Asia's biggest sock's' manufacturing unit by the name of Interloop. Crescent and Nishat groups are leading yarn manufacturers while it has state-of-the-art edible oil unit Rafhan Maize. Similarly, Iqbal Rice is also a member of FCCI which is continuously winning president's trophy of best exporter.
He further told that the colonisation of M-3 Industrial Estate has been kicked off and we are also acquiring additional 3300 acres of land on the other side of motorway for its future expansion. He told that a Hyundai Car Assembly Plant is also under completion while other industries are also passing through different stages of completion.
Regarding Pak-USA relations, he told that our friendship is decades old with political ups and downs. "America remained our true business partner as the trade balance always remained in favour of Pakistan," he told. "I am also manufacturing leading 'American Eagle' brand while other units are also working as vendors of leading departmental stores of America and Europe," he added.
He told that America has helped Pakistan in energy, education and health sectors. During last decade, America helped agriculture sector of Pakistan by replacing energy intensive agriculture tube wells with solar powered and energy efficient tube wells. Similarly, latest and most sophisticated gadgets were installed to divert electricity from surplus grids to the overloaded stations.
He thanked American cooperation in agriculture sector. However, he told that basically Pakistan is an agrarian economy and its 70 percent population is directly or indirectly linked with it. Hence, we need high yielding American seeds to enhance our per acre yield which is necessary to eliminate rural poverty.
He mentioned excellent performance of Rafhan Maize and told that our farmers are getting yield of 150 mounds where per acre yield of Pakistani seed is only 65 mounds. He appreciated the anti-war strategy of US President and said that practically America has isolated itself from wars for the last two years and it is a good omen for international peace.
Regarding American investment in oil and gas fields, he stressed that America should also invest in Pakistan. He particularly mentioned an oil refinery at Gwadar or Karachi which would not only trim the overall import bill of Pakistan but also encourage ancillary industry on permanent basis.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2019

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