BIRMINGHAM: As part of his efforts to reach out to the community and explore avenues of multifaceted cooperation between Pakistan and the UK, High Commissioner Moazzam Ahmad Khan is currently visiting Birmingham and Wales. On the second day of his visit on Friday (26-06-21), the High Commissioner held detailed meetings with the Mayor of West Midland Combined Authority, the Lord Mayor of Birmingham, MP from Birmingham, local councillors, officer bearers of Greater Birmingham Chamber of Commerce, leading businessmen, CEO of Edgbaston Stadium, Senior Management of Birmingham City University and media persons.
In his virtual meeting with Mr. Andy Street, the Mayor of West Midland Combined Authority, the High Commissioner discussed issues of mutual interest including matters relating to Pakistani diaspora. While appreciating the close association of the Mayor with Pakistani diaspora in the West Midlands, the High Commissioner underscored the importance of further strengthening the bond through more avenues in the post Covid period. He also extended an invitation to the mayor for a visit to Pakistan.
In his talk with MP Khalid Mehmood and Mike Olley, Executive Director of Westside Business Improvement District (BID), the High Commissioner discussed possibilities of further fortifying the strong multifaceted relations between the two countries. The High Commissioner noted that the presence of a large Pakistani diaspora provides a strong base for special and strong bilateral relations. He also spoke on matters of business improvement with the Executive Director.
In his interaction with Mr. Muhammad Afzal, Lord Mayor of Birmingham, local Councillors and Mr. Stuart Cain, CEO of Edgbaston stadium, the High Commissioner discussed matters pertaining to youth, tourism and trade.
Meeting with business community and the office bearers of Greater Birmingham Chamber of Commerce including Mandy Hayes, Ms. Anjum Khan, Nasir Awan and Stefanie Bowes remained very productive in terms of identifying tangible steps for enhancing bilateral commercial relations. While highlighting Pakistan’s improved ranking in terms of ease of doing business, the existence of a huge market of 222 million people with large middle class, availability of English speaking economical skilled labour and business friendly legislative framework, the High Commissioner called upon the interlocutors to invest in and trade with Pakistan. Discussing the role of a large number of UK companies in sustaining the strong commercial linkages between the two countries, he shared with the office bearers of GBCC the recent positive indicators of bilateral trade and investments.
The High Commissioner also visited Birmingham City University and discussed with Professor Dr. Hanifa Shah, Pro Vice Chancellor, Mr. Julian Bear, Deputy Vice Chancellor, and other senior faculty members, avenues and possibilities of enhancing cooperation in higher education and research. Creation of a framework for establishing linkages with sister institutions in Pakistan through the active support and facilitation of government, academia and industry was agreed as a founding step for a sustainable, productive and action oriented academic cooperation.