FPCCI & UN to Collaborate for Sustainable Development Irfan Iqbal Sheikh

Karachi (PR): In a statement on the occasion of FPCCI &UN’s consultative session on sustainable development goals (SDGs) & potential of sustained collaboration, Mr. Irfan Iqbal Sheikh, President FPCCI, has welcomed the endeavors of United Nations in Pakistan to promote sustainable, inclusive and socially responsible business growth &practices. He has also expressed his desire to collaborate with UN from the platform of FPCCI on behalf of the entire business, industry and trade community of Pakistan, as being the apex body, FPCCI is uniquely positioned to create awareness across all sectors of the economy on SDGs, climate change, gender equality and social justice.

It is pertinent to note that the high-profile event was attended by UN officials from its various organs; namely, United Nations Resident Coordinator Office (UNRCO); UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO);UN Development Program (UNDP); UN International Children’s Education Fund (UNICEF); Food & Agricultural Organization (FAO); World Food Program (WFP) and Global Compact from Pakistan, Bangladesh & USA.

Mr. Suleman Chawla, SVP FPCCI, apprised the session that FPCCI has functional & representative standing committees in place on various socioeconomic sectors of the economy; and, it can fully support UN’s Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (SDCF) for Pakistan for the period of 2023 – 27. He added that these committees comprise of reputable experts from varied fields of sustainable development, i.e. environment, climate change, health, education, women entrepreneurship, women empowerment, human rights, skills development, etc.

Engr. M. A. Jabbar, VP FPCCI, taking part in a high-profile panel discussion with Ms. Shahnaz Wazirali, a
noted politician and a former member of the federal cabinet, emphasized that Pakistan needs to have an
efficient, modern, functioning, honest and socially responsible bureaucracy to create an enabling environment
for social development; else, no program for sustainable development and social upliftment will be successful.

Ms. Shahnaz Wazirali said that we must embrace diversity, inclusivity, environmental consciousness, social justice and women emancipation to achieve SDGs and tread the path of inclusive & sustainable economic growth. She added that education for all should take prominence in achieving sustainable development.

Mr. Shah Nasir Khan, UN resident coordination officer, informed that UN is aware of the fact that Pakistan needs tens of billions of dollars to rehabilitate 33 million people affected by the recent floods and rebuild the infrastructure in the affected areas.

Dr. Jawaid Qureshi, convener of FPCCI’s central standing committee on UN affairs, maintained that in order to protect Pakistan from the adverse and disproportionate effects of global warming, we need to have at least 25 percent of the country covered by forests; but currently, as matter of fact, we only have 2 percent of forests in Pakistan – which is a recipe for disaster.

Brig Iftikhar Opel, SI (M), Retd.

Secretary General