Pakistan US business council demands direct market access to US markets
Terming US President Donald Trump letter to Prime Minister Imran Khan for helping Americans in Afghanistan a big diplomatic success for Pakistan Founder Chairman Pak-US Business Council Iftikhar Ali Malik said cordial relations between the two partners were important for restoring peace and ensuring prosperity in the region.
In a statement, he said US president Donald Trump should announce packages of incentives for the quick revival of the Pakistani economy as the country has also suffered losses a lot economically in the war against terror.
He said USA should remove the bottlenecks in bilateral investment treaty and efforts should now be made on signing a free trade agreement (FTA) at the earliest and it is now imperative that USA should offer same package and incentives which it offers to Bangladesh and Sri Lanka in textile exports, such as duty concessions and market access.
Pakistan and the United States have been close allies in fight against terrorism, which is a common threat to all nations of the world adding that as a matter of policy, Pakistan does not allow use of its territory against any country. Instead of relying on the false narrative of safe havens, the US needs to work sincerely with Pakistan to stamp out the menace of terrorism," he added.
He said Pakistan desired peace and stability in Afghanistan as peace in Kabul was good for the entire region but the veteran trade leader Iftikhar Ali Malik stressed that after 16 years of conflict, it was clear that lasting peace in Afghanistan could only be achieved through a comprehensive political process. "Pakistan stands ready to work with Afghanistan and the United States to that end," he said.
"We must recognize that there are no military solutions to these long wars, and policy clarity, regional cooperation and strategic consensus is critical to preserving key rights gains made in many parts of Afghanistan.
Pakistan is invested more than any country in stability and peace in Afghanistan, especially given our long border and history of traffic and refugee hosting, so a more constructive path is better advised for all those committed to the same goals," he pointed out.
Iftikhar Malik suggested the United States and Pakistan should expand cooperation on the 2013 Joint Action Plan on Trade and Investment as the United States remains Pakistan's largest bilateral export market and a significant source of foreign direct investment. He said it would be in the interest of both the countries to enhance their trade volume which had been hovering around $5 billion for the last five years. – APP