Ahmed Shaikhani, President of the Pakistan Business Council Dubai Image Credit: Supplied

How did you initially become involved in the Pakistan Business Council Dubai?

The Pakistan Business Council (PBC) is a vibrant business community that is actively involved in providing solutions for business groups. Several years ago my late father Abu Baker Shaikhani, the former president of PBC Dubai, was actively involved in the betterment of the business community.

I took the inspiration from him and wanted to become involved and give my best to the community. Gradually, I involved myself on a committee basis and then
took a directorship role, Later, with the support of directors and members, I became president. 

What do you see as the key responsibilities of the PBC Dubai?

The council is a non-profit voluntary association of individuals and companies whose objectives are to promote the development of commerce and investment between the UAE and Pakistan.

We act as a direct liaison with Dubai Chamber of Commerce, various chambers of commerce in Pakistan and other chambers of commerce and business organisations worldwide.

We work to express the views of the local Pakistan business community to public and private interests in Pakistan.

The council also provides a forum in which Pakistani business executives in Dubai and elsewhere in the UAE and business executives with Pakistani interests may identify, discuss and pursue commercial common interests regarding their activities. We also work with individuals and organisations in Dubai and other emirates on commercial matters of mutual interest.

Approximately how many members are there in the PBC Dubai and what are the main industries that the council represents?

We are a group of 800 business houses and 3,000 business units in the UAE, all of whom hail from Pakistan and are well established in Dubai and are operational as a registered entity with the Dubai Chamber of Commerce.

The member business houses are shaped from varied experiences and represent success stories in various fields of business. The sectors include real estate development, real estate brokers, architects, financial consultants, chartered accountants, machinery, food, signage, general trading, imports and exports, clearing and forwarding agents, private equity and many more.

Which sectors do you identify as having the most potential for growth?

There is a lot of potential that several industries currently offer. However, it is mainly the different types of trading such as in spare parts, automobiles and
building materials that is seeing traction.

Dubai is also a friendly environment for Pakistani trade and that offers good
opportunities, especially when it comes to the African continent. We see potential in the real estate and textile sectors.

How can your members benefit from the upcoming Expo 2020?

Expo 2020 is an opportunity for business communities to be exposed to the vast numbers of international traders and business owners attending the Expo. As a business council our members will benefit from the event as an equal partner in the growth of the UAE economy and as representatives of Pakistani products and services.

What are the main challenges Pakistani businesses in the UAE face?

The main challenges are a lack of market confidence, shortage of capital and a high cost of living and operating.

How can a business join the PBC Dubai and what benefits can they expect?

It’s very easy to join the PBC. We have a presence on Facebook, a great website as well as dedicated staff who are available and on call to assist new membership registrations.

For more information visit pbcdubai.ae (+971 56 109 3017)