ISLAMABAD: Pak-US Business Council on Saturday urged the US and Pakistan to promote trade between the two countries and take concrete and durable result-oriented measures to obliterate trust deficit over Afghanistan in the wake of the war on terror and sustainable peace in the region.
Addressing a delegation of traders from SAARC member countries here today, Pak-US Business Council Founder Chairman said Pakistan is inevitable for peace in South Asia and any US policy without Pakistan will not be fruitful to stamp out terrorism.”
“However, America’s open double standards in relation to India and Pakistan and secret double game with the latter have created unbridgeable trust deficit between Pakistan and the US,” he added.
SAARC Chamber of Commerce and Industry Vice President Iftikhar Malik further said the world especially the US under Trump administration should recognise the sacrifices of Pakistan on the war against terrorism.
He said terrorism has claimed more than 74,000 people over the last 14 years and suffered over $ 123 billion economic losses besides damaging roads network.
He said the business community wants no confrontation with the US but only an independent foreign policy and strategy with regard to the war on terrorism without anyone’s dictation.
He said Pakistan is the only country in the world which has hosted the largest number of Afghan refugees for more than three decades.
Malik said the US administration instead of imposing restrictions on Pakistan should offer fruitful help to Pakistan for the revival of its economy so that we can fight more efficiently against terrorism.
He also urged the government to prefer a policy of “trade not aid” and promote trade and investment with the world including the US for strengthening national economy fractured in the fight against terror for the more than one decade.
He said the United States is Pakistan’s largest bilateral trading partner.
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.
Iftikhar further said that the Trump-led US administrations should recognise the colossal sacrifices rendering to flush out terrorism in the region as Pakistan is bearing irrecoverable heavy loss due to active participation in the war on terror.
He suggested that the two countries 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.