LAHORE - New Pakistan is emerging due to rapid development especially China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, which would serve as the backbone of Pakistan’s connectivity with the Western as well as Central Asian countries.

This was stated by Philip Barton, UK High Commissioner to Pakistan, during his visit to the under construction largest shopping mall in Pakistan here at Johar Town, Lahore.

“Gawadar Prject is fascinating China which has started several development projects near Pakistan border. I am seeing a reverse brain drain in Pakistan that would prove to be a game changer for the country.”

He said that investors are gaining confidence as the security situation in the country has improved and economic stability is visible. He hoped that these emerging opportunities would turn a new leaf in the economic history of Pakistan.

He reminded the manufacturers to adhere to international conventions on human rights and labour standards for continued access to EU markets under GSP Plus status.

The granting of GSP Plus status to Pakistan by EU led to a big boost in trade, as Pakistan registered about $1 billion increase in its export to EU countries. “We would like Pakistani companies to have the best opportunities in EU markets.” He said more British brands are coming into Pakistan giving boost to domestic retail sector, generating huge jobs opportunities.

Philip Barton also paid a visit to Pakistan’s largest retail complex, the Emporium Mall. The new 11 storied Emporium Mall is being developed over a land area of over 2 million square feet and is set to open to the public in 2016.

Chairman Nishat Group Mian Muhammad Mansha apprised the media of the Emporium Mall’s features; including a nine screen cinema complex, country’s largest food court, banquet halls, restaurants, a dedicated high fashion retail area, gold market, 5 star Nishat hotel etc.

He said that Emporium Mall is being developed in accordance with international standards, which will generate employment opportunities for at least 10,000 people directly and indirectly. Presently 2000 people are working at the site.

Speaking about the Mall, Nishat Group Chairman Mian Mohammad Mansha said, “This landmark project is set to change the commercial face of the city and make it a retail destination of choice for people across the country and indeed, the region.”

The Emporium Mall is being developed in accordance with international standards of quality in the retail sector and its team has engaged a special panel of international consultants to ensure that the Mall incorporates international retail best practices. The panel comprises of Australian retail consultant Tony Davis, project architects Marcus Wilkins & Ali Naqvi from AHR-Global, UK, security consultants WSP, UK, wayfinding consultants Design Technique, UK and lighting consultants Electrolyte, UK.