LAHORE: US Special Representative for Commercial and Business Affairs Dilawar Syed says his country is keen to enhance bilateral trade with Pakistan besides tapping the investment opportunities in different sectors like textile, renewable energy and agriculture.

Syed, while speaking to the representatives of All Pakistan Textile Mills Association on Monday, was confident to say that a huge investment in the textile sector was expected. And after availing tremendous trade opportunities from the US, Pakistani textile exports may exceed $100 billion by end of the current decade.

The US envoy said Pakistan had strong potential to grow in textile and other sectors and its exporters could easily benefit from the liberal economic policies followed by the US.

He proposed Aptma leadership to focus on continuing engagements and dialogue with their American counterparts to upsurge trade volume and to get maximum benefit of economic partnership between both the countries.

He termed economic partnership between Pakistan and US very crucial for the US administration. “The textile is one of the five crucial pillars of American economic policy and offer great potential to Pakistani textile exporters. And I am optimistic that there is huge potential to expand bilateral commercial and economic ties,” he said, adding that posting of new American ambassador and a large number of diplomats in American mission in Pakistan exclusively for economic relations would facilitate bilateral investment and economic growth.

Speaking on the occasion, Aptma Chairman Abdul Rahim Nasir said the US was Pakistan’s largest trade partner with a total bilateral trade of US$ 7.2 billion in 2020-21.

According to him, total exports of Pakistan to the US stood at $4.8 billion against total imports of $2.4 billion from the US. He added that textile exports from Pakistan to the US fetched more than $3 billion during the last financial year.

PML-Q: Dilawar Syed also called on Punjab Assembly Speaker Chaudhry Parvez Elahi at his chamber on Monday and discussed Pak-US relations, political situation in the country, parliamentary affairs and issues of mutual interest.

Speaker Elahi stressed the need for enhancing mutual contacts, trade and maximum exchange of delegations at the public level for promotion of longstanding relations between the two countries.

He said partnership between the United States and Pakistan was 75 years old and the US was the largest export market for Pakistan. He said maximum facilities should be provided to the people of both the countries for economic development.

Mr Elahi said partnership between Pakistan and the United States needed to be further strengthened in trade, investment, education, energy and health, among other sectors. He said the entry of Pakistan and the US into Silicon Valley would play a key role in enhancing bilateral trade relations.

US special representative Dilawar Syed, who has been president and CEO of Small and Medium Enterprises in the United States and had extensive experience in trade and economic policies, said he would play his role in enhancing the cordial relations between Pakistan and the US. He said the US was committed to enhancing bilateral relations with Pakistan.

Ms. Gaia, regional policy leader for the US International Development Finance Corporation, Ms. Kathleen Gibilisco, head of Political and Economic Affairs at the US Consulate in Lahore, and Ms. Sadaf Saad, political and economic specialist for the US Consulate were also present in the meeting.

Published in Dawn, July 5th, 2022

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