US Consul General in Lahore Ms. Catherine Rodriguez has pledged to support Pakistani businessmen’s endeavors for enhancing Pakistan’s exports to United States.
She was speaking at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry. LCCI President Irfan Iqbal Sheikh, Senior Vice President Ali Hussam Asghar, Vice President Mian Zahid Jawaid Ahmad, Senior Vice President of SAARC Chamber Iftikhar Ali Malik, former LCCI Presidents Bashir A. Bakhsh and Sohail Lashari spoke on the occasion.
“Business is very near to my heart as I belong to a business family”, the US Consul General said and added that US Consulate would extend every possible help for visa to Pakistani businessmen who want to do business with United States.
LCCI President Irfan Iqbal Sheikh suggested establishment of an Export Processing Zone under the umbrella of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry and US Consulate in Lahore to give a quantum jump to Pakistan’s exports to United States.
The LCCI President also sought the support of US Consul General for establishment of a state-of-the-art Certification Laboratory in Lahore for food, textile, rice, leather and other industries.
He informed the US Consul General that a delegation of LCCI from I.T and Textile value added industries would visit United States very soon, headed by himself. The delegation would meet retailers and information technology related people to promote cooperation in these particular sectors.
While answering a question from US Consul General Ms. Catherine Rodriguez, the LCCI President expressed optimism that Pakistan would get rid of its economic issues by June 2020 under the leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan who is doing tireless efforts for economic revival of the country.
LCCI Senior Vice President Ali Hussam Asghar said that the Lahore Chamber would focus on exports during the ongoing year and US support in this regard is of utmost importance. He said that there are tremendous opportunities for US companies to enter into joint ventures with Pakistani companies and incorporate cutting-edge US technologies into energy projects throughout Pakistan, particularly in Renewable Energy. There is also a tremendous opportunity for US companies to invest in the blossoming E-Commerce Sector in Pakistan.
He also emphasized the need of direct market access for Pakistani exporters in United States. He said that textile is the largest export sector to US from Pakistan. “We have the potential to double or triple our export of this sector immediately by just giving direct access to US retailers and by encouraging value addition”, Ali Hussam Asghar said.
He added that other potential areas where Pakistan and US can enhance Trade by entering into Joint Ventures are Pharmaceuticals, Leather, Light Engineering e.g. Surgical Instruments, Processed food, Financial services, Retail Sector, Agriculture Technology, Poultry and Meat etc.