LAHORE - A delegation of British investors, led by UK Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Pakistan, Tuesday showed keen interest to invest in Pakistan's projects.

The UK government is determined and strongly desires to see more developed economic and trade ties with Pakistan, said UK Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Pakistan while meeting with senior government officials in Lahore.

Abdul Rehman Chishti, UK’s Trade Envoy to Pakistan, said that UK government wants to see British companies doing business with, and in, Pakistan, and playing an active role in the Pakistan economic development as both nations share an ambition to increase their economic, trade and cultural ties.

A high level delegation headed by UK Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Pakistan Abdul Rehman Chishti MP along with senior business representatives from the UK’s financial, legal and professional services sector visited Lahore and held meeting with number of prominent government officials and shared talks regarding economic growth and mounting investment opportunities in the province.

The delegation comprised of Rehman Chishti – MP Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Pakistan, Elin Burns – British Deputy High Commissioner, Ali Aziz - Senior Manager (Mott McDonalds), Mark Gill - Project Principal (Mott McDonald), Farmida Bi - Partner (Norton Rose Fulbright), Stephen Hart - Senior Executive Officer (Jardine Lloyd Thompson), Michael Dryer - Investment Director Infrastructure (Commonwealth Development Corporation PLC), SaadUl Islam - Investment Manager, Infrastructure (CDC PLC) and Matt Lister - Deputy Director and First Secretary Trade(British High Commission Islamabad). The aim of the visit was to discuss various forthcoming infrastructure projects, investment opportunities and how UK companies can play a greater role in the development of Punjab.

Minister Industries Sheikh Allauddin welcomed the high powered delegation and briefed them about the immense business opportunities in Punjab. While addressing the occasion, he stated that Pakistan has now become a much stable, peaceful and prosperous country and there is a vast scope of investment in various sectors in Pakistan particularly Punjab. He said that government is providing facilities to the investors on priority basis and a conducive atmosphere has been created for investment in Punjab under one roof. A number of helpful presentations were shared with the delegation.

Abdul Rehman Chishti, speaking at the occasion, stated: “This is my second visit to Pakistan and I am pleased to bring with me a delegation of some of the United Kingdom’s leading companies to support Pakistan in the development of the country’s economy.” Rehman Chishti highly appreciated the hospitality of Punjab government for their warmth and expressed the desire to strengthen and deepen relations with Pakistan. He termed Pakistan as land of opportunities and informed that both countries enjoy strong ties and UK was looking forward for investment opportunities in services, goods, banking and security, tourism sectors. Apart from that, he also showed immense interest in upgradation of Pakistan Railways.

Chief Minister’s Advisor and Vice Chairman PBIT Khawaja Ahmad Hassan said: “Pakistan is a rapidly growing economy and fifth largest consumer market in the world with 200 million population, while our economy is continuously flourishing in various sectors.”

The UK and Pakistan have a shared ambition to deepen our economic relationship and it is the UK government’s firm desire to see more British companies doing business with, and in, Pakistan creating jobs and prosperity and playing an active role in Pakistan’s economic development.

The meeting was attended by Khawaja Ahmed Hassan, CEO PBIT, Jahanzeb Burana, CEO Lahore Knowledge Park, Dr Zubair Iqbal Ghouri and number of governmental bodies and representatives from various prominent departments. The participants hoped that trade envoy of UK’s Prime Minister will play an instrumental role in further improving the trade and investment relations between Pakistan and UK.