German CG’s innovative idea, Dutch envoy highlights similarities of Karachi with her country

Salahuddin Haider

ASSOCIATING corporate sector in an 11-week programme to highlight a country’s achievements and its efforts to promote people to people contacts, though not new to the developed world, was something novel and innovative here in Pakistan. The German consul general Rainer Schmiedchen, however, executed it with tremendous perfection and set an example for others to emulate.
Titled as ‘German Weeks in Karachi’, the festival-like functions have been on since Oct 3—the day of German Unity. Midway through it, an enterprising show of top of the line Mercedez-Benz cars was organized at the consulate here to the sheer delight of week-end crowd of business elite, media personnel, and corporate executives.
On display were two latest model cars—navy blue, and milky white. Invitees were thrilled by its design and luxurious interior. Rainer, alongwith Muhammad Naeem, Chief Executive of the well-established Shahnawaz Ltd, agents in Pakistan of the world-renowned make since almost half a century, and company director, Naseem Shiekh, had beautiful anecdotes for couples and diplomats drawn in the guests line-up. The show, organized by Rainer, and Goethe Institute Director Stefan Winkler, will continue till December 13.
The Netherlands Ambassador in Islamabad Jeannette Seppen was in Karachi during the weekend. Speaking at the English Speaking Union same afternoon, the lady, symbol of courtesy, chose an interesting topic to highlight ‘similarities and opportunities ‘ between Karachi and her country.
She set the packed house on laughter by saying that English was not her ‘lollypop’ and yet she was here to deliver lecture at a forum meant to promote English language.
Karachi, she said, was a ‘wonderful city with wonderful people’. It was a city with a population of 19 million, which was bigger than the entire population of her country—17 million. ‘I love this city’
Pakistan and the Netherlands had a history as old as Pakistan itself. The city had Port Qasim, and Keamari, while Netherlands was also known for its ports of Rotterdum, rivers, etc.
The challenges which the two countries had to face were similar.
The Netherlands, which is also called as Holland could lend a helping hand in water and waste management, and was interested in cattle farming, for which her country enjoyed envious reputation.
The International Court of Justice was located in its capital, The Hague. Earlier the President of EUSP Aziz Memon paying tributes to her recalled that she was ambassador to Iraq before taking up her present assignment. She had served in Sri Lanka, Bosnia, Kosovo, Afghanistan, in the Middle East, and at European Union headquarters in Brussels etc.

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