‘Our shal­war kameez is pos­si­bly the only liv­ing tra­di­tional cos­tume in the world to­day.’

Enterprise - - Opinion - - Faiza Samee

What did you bring back from the Lifet­syle Pak­istan Show in In­dia in terms of fu­ture busi­ness po­ten­tial?

For me es­sen­tially, Life­style Pak­istan was a dream come true be­cause when I first went to In­dia in 1995, I saw a great po­ten­tial for Pak­istani prod­ucts there if we were to open trade. I have seen In­dia as a huge chal­lenge with a lot of po­ten­tial that Pak­istan can uti­lize de­spite the ap­pre­hen­sions of some who fear that In­dia might take over our mar­ket. I dis­agree with this. The up­per mid­dle class in In­dia is in a ma­jor­ity; they like to spend and have an in­sa­tiable ap­petite for our goods - and they have a strong cur­rency to sup­port it.

Please tell us a bit about the qual­ity of Pak­istani prod­ucts that were dis­played.

Our shal­war kameez is pos­si­bly the only liv­ing tra­di­tional cos­tume in the world to­day - as op­posed to the ki­mono, sarong or the sa­ree, that have never re­ally evolved from their orig­i­nal form and, in most cases, are limited to spe­cial oc­ca­sion wear. Each year in­ter­na­tional fash­ion is in­cor­po­rated in the shal­war kameez and a new style is evolved with vari­a­tions. The shal­war kameez presents it­self in a new Avatar.

Pak­istani women are very stylish and love to dress up. Our de­signer wear is in high de­mand in Pak­istan which is a huge mar­ket for fash­ion. I am glad now that trade is of­fi­cially open­ing be­tween our two coun­tries, I an­tic­i­pate so will In­dia be­come a big buyer of Pak­istani fash­ion.

What did you think of the Life­Style Pak­istan ini­tia­tive taken by TDAP?

Pak­ista­nis and In­di­ans are sim­i­lar in so many ways yet dif­fer­ent in many oth­ers which makes the ex­change very ex­cit­ing for me. TDAP has taken a huge ini­tia­tive and the fa­cil­i­ties and op­por­tu­ni­ties pro­vided in terms of visas, ho­tels, tax re­duc­tions, freight for­ward­ing were com­mend­able and I’m def­i­nitely a sup­porter of his ini­tia­tive .

J&S did a great job in man­ag­ing the event from stem to stern; the venue’s chore­og­ra­phers, mod­els, en­ter­tain­ment and stalls were cho­sen ap­pro­pri­ately and were up to stan­dard. Though it was the first time Pak­istan was do­ing some­thing at such a huge scale, I thought TDAP and J&S did their best. It is very easy to crit­i­cize but we must re­al­ize that to do some­thing on this scale in In­dia is no easy task. We were there for se­ri­ous busi­ness and achieved great suc­cess in the de­sired ar­eas.

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