Outgoing Pakistan High Commissioner to Malaysia Mr. Masood Khalid has lauded the role played by the Malaysia-Pakistan Business Council (MPBC) in enhancing bilateral trade relations, saying the Council formed in March last year was serving as an ideal platform for tapping into business opportunities in both countries.
After almost 30-month-long stint as head of Pakistan Mission in Malaysia, Mr. Masood Khalid whose next posting is to Beijing, said the MPBC had already made a very good start by organising various activities, including organizing three well-attended cross country business forums, sending business delegations to Pakistan to attend trade exhibitions and conducting business matchmaking sessions for entrepreneurs from both sides.
He said that with the establishment of the council, Malaysian businessmen now had a platform to make further inroads into Pakistan. “We can now talk about economic and social issues and other matters that were not previously discussed by businessmen in both countries. The council is a vital platform to spearhead more business interactions as well as social and cultural exchanges,” he said in an interview with Malaysia’s state-owned news agency Bernama.
He also lauded the services rendered by MPBC Chairman Datuk Mohamad Salim Fateh Din and announced that in recognition of Datuk’s contribution and role in enhancing economic cooperation between the two countries, the Pakistani government was awarding him a medal of distinction, which will be formally presented to him on Pakistan Day, March 23 next year.
About his reflections on his life in Malaysia, Mr. Masood said he had been overwhelmed by Malaysian hospitality and touched by its people’s warmth and friendliness and was leaving Malaysia with a tinge of nostalgia. “I have enjoyed my stay here, even though it has been a short one. I have enjoyed the beauty of your country, your cuisine, your customs, your culture and the liveliness of Malaysia,” he said.
“And I have personally experienced the special sentiment for Pakistan everywhere I went. Even among men of the street, when I said I was from Pakistan, I could see there was a special sentiment and warmth for Pakistan. That was very touching for my family and I,” said the High Commissioner.
Recalling the early days of his posting here in August 2010, he remarked that he was surprised to find Malaysians knew so much about biryani. “Every other person I met talked about biryani. That was a surprise to me because I didn’t know Malaysians knew so much about biryani,” he said.
However, biryani aside, he hoped that Pakistanis and Malaysians could raise their awareness of each other’s culture, through cultural exchanges.
He noted that there were many similarities between the two cultures because their religious values, history and widespread use of English.
When asked about his new posting, Masood said he was looking forward to it and described the posting to China as an “important assignment for any Pakistani diplomat.”