Karachi, November 23, 2012 (PPI-OT): The Sindh Governor’s 5-day visit to England and Northern Ireland has been highly successful. The governor and his ministers Reza Haroon, and Dr Sagheer, did a wonderful job for ensuring investment in their province, said the British Deputy High Commissioner Francis Campbell talking to this correspondent.
Our discussions took place during the Omanese National Day, celebrated at a local hotel in Karachi Monday evening. The Oman consul general, Ali Ahmed Al-Qassimi is a brilliant man, an astute diplomat, and an excellent host.
Unfortunately, his party was without any known VIP. Normally the governor or the chief minister or both attend national days of various countries, celebrated by their respective diplomatic missions. This time none of them were present, not even speaker Sindh Assembly or any provincial minister turned up, which was sordid affair. The chief minister’s advisor, Sharmila Farooqi, had to represent the government. National anthems of the two countries were played, cake was cut for Pak-Oman friendship. The party, minus the VIPs, otherwise, was a warm one.
It was full of diplomats including from Kuwait Nassir Al-Muttairi, the UAE’s Sohail, who looks charming, sporting a beard now, the South Korean consul general, In-Ki Lee, The Russian Consul General Andre Demidov, the German consul general Dr Klinner with his beautiful Russian wife, The British Deputy High Commissioner, Francis Campbell, Sri Lankan consul general D W Jinadasa and his wife, the French consul general, businessmen, journalists etc; all were there in great number. Oman, under Sultan Qaboos has been making rapid progress, and Sultan Qaboos himself travels to all parts of the country, even living in tents at various places to know the problems of his people.
He is a dynamic leader and has been working hard for the progress and welfare of his Sultanate. The party was also attended by the newly arrived Bahrain consul general Ebrahim A Al-Hejazi. He has been here for 6 weeks only, and is trying to settle down.
However apart from being a handsome young man, he is articulate, well educated, and has firm grip on the subject of the region as well as in skills of diplomacy, appears a keen student of Pakistani history. It was noticed during conversations that some of the diplomats have to wait for long for NOCs from foreign office to move to Balochistan, which falls within their duty jurisdiction. These NOCs, especially for European diplomats should be waived.
Pakistan has no problem with Europe, which in fact is a big investor and also helps develop social sectors in Pakistan. Dr Klinner recently organized a German week for the facility of the Pakistanis in Karachi and looks forward to more such functions to upgrade the social life and activities in Karachi.
This is direly needed. Former Sindh minister Noman Saigal was also present, and were the two businessmen brothers Ishtiaq Beg and Ikhtiar Beg, both honorary consuls. Noman Saigal is currently chairman of the standing committee on communications affairs at the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry, stamp collector Arif Balgamwalla was jovial with his remarks, and Saleem Kassim Patel, son of a former Sindh minister and one of the founders of the PPP, Kassim Abbas Patel, was there.
He looks after his family business of construction. Kassim Patel, now octogenarian, has devoted himself to charity work for his community and others, said his son. Reverting to Governor’s visit to UK, Francis said that a lot of companies were interested in investing in Sindh.
They were impressed by the presentation made to them about investment climate and facilities available for foreign investors. A major British company is keen on establishing its factory in Sindh. Francis had flown to England a week ago before the governor’s arrival in London.
The Pakistan high commission to UK Wajid Shamsul Hassan remained with him throughout which was of great assistance to Dr Ishrat ul Ebad and his colleagues, forming the official delegation.
For more information, contact:
Sindh Governor House
Syed Wajahat Ali
Press Secretary to Governor
Tel: 99201217, 99201201-3