APL hopes govt will resolve issues of overseas Pakistanis

MANCHESTER: Association of Pakistani Lawyers (APL) Chairman Barrister Amjad Malik has hoped that the new government of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) under the leadership of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will take serious steps to resolve the issues of overseas Pakistanis, particularly those living in the UK.

While talking to this scribe during an exclusive sitting, Amjad Malik, a specialist in immigration, human rights and constitutional law, said that Pakistanis in the UK were facing countless problems in various departments to get their actual rights. “Pakistan has to maintain good relations with the British government to resolve bilateral issues,” he viewed.

“The new government is facing huge problems, including the energy crisis, bad fiscal conditions and drone attacks. It will not be possible for the PML-N to sort out international issues without having good diplomatic relations with the UK. The option of trade is also open but the core issues should be addressed on a priority basis to move ahead in other departments,” he maintained.

To a question regarding the interest of foreign investors in Pakistan, he said that overseas investors would trust only if they saw their investment safe and secure.

“The environment must be investor-friendly; no bribery to speed up files, and speedy courts to resolve commercial disputes. Mian (Nawaz Sharif) has a vision to make the country ‘Asian tiger’ and has a good plan too, but foreign investment will not be turned into reality unless efforts are made practically,” he said.

Amjad Malik said that the PML-N leadership had always had a soft corner for overseas Pakistanis, but they needed to manipulate the dual nationality status of those 8 million overseas to stretch the access of Pakistani traders to European markets.

“Overseas Pakistanis can get a relief after the formation of the PM’s Task Force on Overseas Pakistanis, with an adviser and representative-based Overseas Pakistan Foundation (OPF) and investor-friendly environment to protect fire-gun investment to emphasise trade, not aid. There should be voting rights and seats in parliament for overseas Pakistanis. There should also be a high court’s special bench to deal with cases of overseas Pakistanis within six months, and commercial courts to deal with commercial disputes of investors and importers so that contracts are not frustrated due to huge delays in seeking justice,” he demanded.

To another question, he said that Nawaz Sharif seemed serious in overcoming the energy, economic and foreign policy issues as soon as possible, including the unrest and conflicts in all provinces. “He has shown his honesty and seriousness by appointing Abdul Malik Baloch as the chief minister of Balochistan. I think all issues are vital, but load shedding and drones attacks are on the top of the list. Economy will get a boost if the energy crisis is resolved. Power generation projects in Nandipur and Chicho-ki-Malian and Thar must be started. Utilisation but Kalabagh, atomic power plants and solar energy systems is the way forward to resolve the crisis in the longer term,” he said.

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