Ambassador Masood Khan Shares Insights on U.S.–Pakistan Relations, Opportunities for Future Partnerships
HOUSTON, August 29, 2023 — In partnership with the International Academy of Letters USA, Asia Society Texas welcomed Masood Khan, Pakistan’s ambassador to the United States, and Elizabeth Horst, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and Deputy Assistant Secretary responsible for Pakistan, for a discussion on the state of U.S.–Pakistan relations, moderated by Chase Untermeyer, former U.S. ambassador to Qatar. The panel examined the existing partnership between the U.S. and Pakistan and identified opportunities for further collaboration in trade, diplomacy, and security. They also discussed the current challenges of the regional security landscape and different economic approaches to meet these obstacles.
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In his opening remarks, Khan recounted the history of U.S.–Pakistan relations and expressed his views on the U.S. as a trailblazer nation, noting the relevance of the Pakistani diaspora in the U.S. According to Khan, the U.S.–Pakistan relationship has developed dialogue on several important issues such as energy, climate change, investment, health, and education. He added that these conversations could continue to develop in the areas of security cooperation and economic development, and emphasized Pakistan's economic potential and plans to build human capital and boost the tech industry.
Horst highlighted the different initiatives between the U.S. and Pakistan, which include the Trade and Investment Framework Agreement Council, counterterrorism dialogue, and assistance provided by the U.S. to Pakistan during the 2022 floods. "The future of Pakistan–U.S. relations will be colored by the Green Alliance Framework, which encompasses climate change, energy trade, and health,” Horst said. “People and prosperity will shape the future."
When asked about Pakistan's relations with China, Khan stated that ties with the U.S. and China are not mutually exclusive. To this, Horst added that the U.S. acknowledges these historical ties, which are not necessarily at odds with the U.S.–Pakistan relationship. Both speakers also expressed optimism about the Pakistan–India dialogue.
During the conversation with Untermeyer, Horst and Khan reflected on U.S.–Pakistan cooperation in the healthcare industry, particularly regarding Houston's innovative medical center and the potential for knowledge sharing and investment. The panel concluded that the U.S.– Pakistan relationship remains critical, and the two countries must continue working together to build a more secure and prosperous future.
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Asia Society Texas believes in the strength and beauty of diverse perspectives and people. As an educational institution, we advance cultural exchange by celebrating the vibrant diversity of Asia, inspiring empathy, and fostering a better understanding of our interconnected world. Spanning the fields of arts, business, culture, education, and policy, our programming is rooted in the educational and cultural development of our community — trusting in the power of art, dialogue, and ideas to combat bias and build a more inclusive society.