PM Imran invites businessmen, investors in US to benefit from economic opportunities in Pakistan

Published July 21, 2019
PM Imran met with Tahir Javed, a Texas-based Pakistani businessman and a member of the Democratic Party, Javaid Anwar, a Pakistani American businessman, as well as a group of prospective investors. — Photo courtesy PID Twitter
PM Imran met with Tahir Javed, a Texas-based Pakistani businessman and a member of the Democratic Party, Javaid Anwar, a Pakistani American businessman, as well as a group of prospective investors. — Photo courtesy PID Twitter

In a meeting on Sunday morning at the Embassy of Pakistan in Washington DC, Prime Minister Imran Khan invited businessmen and investors to benefit from economic and business opportunities in Pakistan.

The premier is on a three-day official working visit to the US.

Former Ambassador Munir Akram accompanied by Shahal Khan, a leading American investor of Pakistani origin, called on the premier at the Embassy "to discuss trade and investment avenues in Pakistan", according to the party's official Twitter account.

PM Imran also met with Tahir Javed, a Texas-based Pakistani businessman and a member of the Democratic Party; Javaid Anwar, a Pakistani American businessman; as well as a group of prospective investors.

Furthermore, Nasir Javed, Ashraf Kazi and Shaukat Dhanani "briefed the prime minister about their interest for investment in the fields of academia, manufacturing and steel industry".

"Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Minister for Maritime Affairs Ali Zaidi, Adviser on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood, Adviser on Finance Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, SAPM on Overseas Pakistanis and HRD Zulfiqar Abbas Bukhari were also present during the meetings," said PTI in another Twitter post.

Zia Chishti, CEO of Afiniti; Mohammed Khaishgi, Founding Partner of The Resource Group and Hasnain Aslam, Chief Investment Officer at The Resource Group also called on PM Imran at the Embassy, it added.

"The investors expressed their desire to further enhance their investment in the IT and technology sector of Pakistan," it said.

According to a post shared by the government's official Twitter account, the premier invited the businessmen to "benefit from the economic and business opportunities afforded by Pakistan's strategic location and the connectivity to the broader region".

Additionally, the investors appreciated the improved security situation in Pakistan and identified other areas of interest for investment such as energy and tourism sectors.

PM Imran's itinerary

Earlier, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, while discussing the prime minister's schedule, said Prime Minister Imran on Sunday will also meet IMF chief David Lipton and his delegation and will later have a similar meeting with the World Bank president. Later in the evening, he will deliver an address at a community event at Washington’s Capital One Arena.

"We are expecting between 15,000 and 20,000 people," said the chief organiser of the event, Dr Abdullah Riar.

A Twitter post by the party, sharing images from outside the venue, said that "the stage is all set for the historical community address by the prime minister".

The address is scheduled to take place at 4pm Washington DC time, according to the Capital One Arena website, which means 1am Pakistan Standard Time.

"A special documentary will also be aired on the occasion depicting the historic political struggle of Imran Khan," Radio Pakistan reported.

His other engagements include media interviews, addressing the US-Pakistani Business Council and a dinner meeting with selected leaders of America’s corporate sector.

On Monday, the prime minister will arrive at the White House and after the book signing ceremony, he will attend two sessions: a small group meeting and an extended meeting. The first meeting will be in the Oval Office and the second in the cabinet room.

Prime Minister Imran will also have an extensive one-on-one meeting with President Trump. The US leader will accompany him on a White House tour that will give them more time "to mingle and chat", the foreign minister said.

On Tuesday, July 23, US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo will call on the prime minister. Prime Minister Imran will also address a meeting at the US Institute of Peace and have lunch with newspaper editors. Later, he will go to Capitol Hill for a meeting with the Foreign Relations Committee of the Senate and later address the bipartisan Pakistani American Caucus. So far, 40-plus lawmakers have reportedly already signed up for this meeting.

PM Imran will also meet Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi before returning home on July 23.

Hundreds welcome PM to DC

Upon his arrival on Saturday, Americans of Pakistani origin braved sweltering heat to welcome the premier to Washington DC.

Hundreds of members of the community belonging to Washington metro area and other states came to the US capital and lined up along Massachusetts Avenue near Pakistan House, where the prime minister is staying during the visit.

"We are so excited that our leader is here. Pakistani-Americans are here to show their love for him," Johny Bashir, a Virginia-based PTI enthusiast said, as people waved the Pakistani and American flags to express their support for the visit.

"I am so happy as a Pakistani-American that PM [Imran] Khan is here.

"I am sure he will bridge disconnect between the two countries and bring them together in a strong bond of friendship," said Virginia-based Imran Butt.

Saadat Rana, a Woodbridge-based businessman, said the community is waiting anxiously to hear the premier address them at the Capital One Arena.

"We are so happy and believe that the visit will be historic in fostering close relations and creating understanding between [the] peoples of two countries," he said.

"We take pride in the fact that Pakistan has a dignified prime minister now. And the expatriate business community looks forward to investing in Pakistan," Imran Igra, a New York-based entrepreneur who drove to DC for the visit, said.

The gathered supporters changed slogans of 'Pakistan Zindabad'.

A rally of over 100 cars followed the prime minister from Dulles Airport to Washington DC to greet the leader.

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