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Effective ease of doing business can help grow Pakistan’s trade relations with GCC

Effective ease of doing business can help grow Pakistan’s trade relations with GCC

Interview with Syed Muslim Hasany – Director, GREEN PEAK INTERNATIONAL

Profile:

Syed Muslim Hasany is currently working as Director Financial Advisory and Business Development with Green Peak International, a Consultancy firm in Karachi. He is a mid-aged professional accountant, member of Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan since 1993 and Certified Public Accountant from US since 2002. He has been working mostly in the area of Corporate Governance, including Audits and Compliance. During his career, he got opportunities to work in four different countries including Saudi Arabia, Canada, Oman and Pakistan. As his career demands, he interacts with lots of people with different skills, backgrounds, nationalities.

PAGE: Could you give your views on the prospects of trade between the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries and Pakistan?

Syed Muslim Hasany: Pakistan and the GCC countries have always had very warm relations connected with religion, culture and tradition for centuries. Pakistan government always does its best to enhance the trade with the GCC countries. Pakistan can offer a lot in agriculture, textile, minerals, carpets, handmade products, food, sports, etc. Further, Pakistan provides a vast majority of skilled workforce to the GCC countries. The GCC countries mostly offer petroleum products. Currently, though trade imbalance is in favor of the GCC countries, Pakistan’s economy is getting benefit in terms of value and investment. However, Pakistan government is trying its best to enhance product quality, competitiveness and reasonable pricing, which would make it easy to further increase trade between Pakistan and the GCC countries.

PAGE: Kindly share your views on the foreign direct investment from the GCC countries to Pakistan:

Syed Muslim Hasany: The GCC countries are endeavoring to diversify their investment portfolio and it is the time when Pakistan government should approach them for financially viable projects. Saudi Arabia has already showed its intention to invest heavily in oil sector and setting up refinery at Gwadar. Other countries in the GCC may increase their portfolio in Pakistan in the coming years. The government of Pakistan is also working on Ease of Doing Business (EDB), which I believe would attract more investment.

 

PAGE: What are your views on the investment in the energy and construction sectors of Pakistan by the GCC countries?

Syed Muslim Hasany: Energy and construction sectors are wide open in Pakistan for foreign investment. Demand for housing is growing and currently Pakistan needs approximately 10 million houses to provide decent dwelling to its citizens. Accordingly, demand for energy is also growing. The Government of Pakistan is working hard on EDB and to make its local laws & regularization attractive for foreign investment. I believe, as EDB is put in place, foreign investors will come and invest in energy and construction sectors.

PAGE: How would you comment on the foreign organizations operating in Pakistan?

Syed Muslim Hasany: Foreign organizations operating in Pakistan enjoy highly skilled manpower available at low cost and very friendly environment. Further, once EDB is put in place and is effectively in operation, local laws and regulation would become very attractive for investors.

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