US focusing on trade rather than aid because of its strategic importance: Munter)

Rawalpindi: US Ambassador to Pakistan Cameron Munter has said that United States is firmly committed to its Partnership with Pakistan; a relationship is built on a foundation of mutual interests, respect and trust. He said that U.S focusing on trade rather than aid as Pakistan is situated on very important geographical location. America had invested worth of $2 billion in 2010 in the energy sector of the Pakistan to revamp the hydel turbines at Tarbella and other parts of the country,

“Pakistan has huge long term potential for commercial growth in its large, diverse market. The United States is firmly committed to its partnership with Pakistan, and building strong commercial relations, emphasizing trade, not just aid, is a critical part of that relationship.”

He was exchanging these views with the business community of the Rawalpindi during his visit to the Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) here on Tuesday.

His visit underscores the U.S. Embassy’s commitment to increase U.S. Pakistan business ties, in support of Secretary Clinton’s emphasis that the U.S. strives to promote “trade, not just aid.”

Cameron Munter said that war on terror is global issue and it is not only a threat for the U.S but the whole world. “Security situation in Pakistan is not very ideal and foreign investors are reluctant to invest in Pakistan, Business community of the country has the potential to recognize itself in the international markets”, he said.

Munter said that U.S respects the sovereignty of Pakistan and keen to promote the political and trade relations with Pakistan. To a query he said that issues relating to the visa both the governments will soon resolve the problems.

The Ambassador visited MTBC to highlight how U.S. Pakistan business collaboration generates jobs and economic opportunities for Pakistanis and Americans alike. Munter encouraged Pakistan’s private sectors leaders and entrepreneurs to tap the potential to drive job creation and economic growth, while inspiring other Pakistanis to follow their lead.

Speaking on the occasion President RCCI Jawed Akhtar Bhatti said that Pakistan has good trade relations with the United States but it is need of the hour to further enhance the bilateral trade. He said that total exports of Pakistan to U.S. are $3878.48 million which are the 15 percent of the total exports and imports stands at $1773.52 million which are the 4.48 percent of the total imports of the country. He stressed that we the business community want trade rather than aid.

Jawed Bhatti said that U.S investment in the India in 2010 was $1.1 billion and in Pakistan it is mere $0.1247 billion which is very low. He demanded of the honourable guest to further enhance the investment and trade relations with Pakistan. He thanked the US ambassador and ensured him his full cooperation in this regard.

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