WASHINGTON: Minister for Commerce Syed Naveed Qamar today met the leadership of the American Apparel and Footwear Association and representatives of Pakistan’s leading businesses here at the embassy of Pakistan.
The delegation included Stephen Lamar, President & CEO American Apparel & Footwear Association, Nate Harmen, Senior Vice President (Policy), Beth Hughes, Vice President (Trade & Customs Policy), Ms. Hun Quach, Director of Policy and Advocacy, Levi Strauss & Co. and Greg Snipes, CFO & COO, Royce Too LLC. Other participants included Shelley Rider (Interloop), Steve Pianowski (Nishat Chunian), Irfan Hassan (Al-Karam), Ahmed Fraz (Gul Ahmed), Mubasher Butt (Prgmea), Muneeb Tariq (PHMA) and Kamran Arshad (APTMA).
Secretary of Commerce Muhammad Sualeh Ahmed Faruqi briefed the participants about various steps being taken to facilitate the business community and address their issues.
Pak Ambassador to the United States Masood Khan also attended the meeting.
The meeting discussed in detail matters relating to bilateral trade in cotton and textiles with a special focus on strengthening Pakistan-US trade relations, institutionalization of mutual linkages, standardization, traceability and visibility of products and facilitation of the business community.
Addressing participants, the commerce minister said that Pakistan was keen to strengthen its economic ties with the United States. He said that the private sector and the business community had a key role in realizing the vision of enhanced trade ties between the two countries.
The minister said that the government was committed not only to providing every possible facilitation to the business community but also puting in place policies that could fulfil the requirements of the business community and the global market.
The minister said that the private sector should come up with innovative ideas and solutions to overcome existing challenges and secure greater market penetration. He said that diversification of the products while ensuring quality, affordability and competitiveness would help Pakistani products gain more market share.
The meeting was informed that the government was setting up the National Compliance Centre to address issues of compliance of Pakistani products to international standards. The centre would be operational by 30 June 2023.
Also, the minister encouraged US entrepreneurs to take part in the TEXPO exhibition this May.