News / Asia

US Companies Help Pakistan Flood Relief

As the United States and other nations send aid to the flood victims in Pakistan, the private sector is also making significant contributions.  The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is coordinating relief efforts being made by private American corporations.

Stephen Jordan is the executive director of the Business Civic Leadership Center at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.  
“It is one of those cases in which no business is going to be engaged in across the board in everything.  But there are going to be specialists and experts in almost everything,” he said.

Jordan added that U.S. companies have the specific resources to address the many specific needs of disasters like the Pakistan floods.  “A lot of this is self-selecting.  That is the beauty of the private sector.  Individual companies are great at individual things.  So a lot of the pharmaceutical companies, a lot of the health care companies are going to focus on the health care issues,” he said.

“The engineering, construction and heavy equipment companies are going to focus on dams, roads and those kind of things.  The financial services companies are going to help say with small business capacity building, (and) micro-finance,” Jordan said.

Although the death toll has been relatively low, the floods have affected millions of people as it has washed through Pakistan’s economy.  Anne Patterson is the U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan.  She said initial aid trickled in before the magnitude of the disaster was felt.

“I think the response of the international community was anemic at first.  In part because the generous donations to Haiti, in part because the death toll here was mercifully low.”  Ambassador Patterson also said “I think the economic impact is going to be huge because so much of the country was affected.”  She welcomes the help from private companies, and says their involvement will be a boost for Pakistan in the future.

“Pakistan does present very promising investment opportunities for American corporations, who have largely had a very good experience here on the ground in Pakistan,” she said.  “I appreciate that is hard to promote investment when you see a good portion of the country underwater.  But even more urgently now, American investment is going to be required to rebuild the country.”

Ambassador Patterson said “I am convinced that American corporations and entrepreneurs can make money here, even in this environment.”

Stephen Jordan said the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has been approached to help Pakistan in a number of areas.  “The appeals that we have gotten are for example how we can help out children, how we can help out in terms of education, how we can help out in terms of engineering, public works,” he said.  “They are very concerned about dam failures and flooding affecting highway infrastructure.  So we are looking at engineering issues.  We are also looking at massive, massive health care issues.  They are concerned of course about diarrhea, cholera and all of the water-borne illnesses that you can just imagine,” Jordan said.

Once relief aid is gathered, the U.S. military is on the ground to help spread the donations.  “Distribution is always key in natural disasters like this,” Ambassador Patterson said.  “So I think the military is here.  They are very active.  And they are bringing in people from these isolated areas of the country with the capacity only the United States can provide.”

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce says Pakistan ranks as the third largest recipient of disaster assistance from the business community over the past five years, behind Haiti and China.


Jim Stevenson

For over 35 years, Jim Stevenson has been sharing stories with the world on the radio and internet. From both the field and the studio, Jim enjoys telling about specific events and uncovering the interesting periphery every story possesses. His broadcast career has been balanced between music, news, and sports, always blending the serious with the lighter side.

You May Like

Americans Celebrate Thanksgiving

Feasts centering on turkeys with an array of traditional sides and desserts are part of the holiday's traditions, which falls on the fourth Thursday in November More

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

With two years left in term, analysts say, president has less to lose by taking conversation on race further More

Video Italian Espresso Expands Into Space

When Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti headed for the ISS, her countrymen worried how she would survive six months drinking only instant coffee More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Community Kicks Off Thanksgiving With Paradei
X
Anush Avetisyan
November 26, 2014 10:57 PM
Thursday is Thanksgiving in the United States, a holiday whose roots go back to the country's earliest days as a British colony. One way Americans celebrate the occasion is with parades. Anush Avetisyan takes us to one such event on the day before Thanksgiving near Washington, where a community's diversity is on display. Joy Wagner narrates
Video

Video US Community Kicks Off Thanksgiving With Parade

Thursday is Thanksgiving in the United States, a holiday whose roots go back to the country's earliest days as a British colony. One way Americans celebrate the occasion is with parades. Anush Avetisyan takes us to one such event on the day before Thanksgiving near Washington, where a community's diversity is on display. Joy Wagner narrates
Video

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

Throughout the crisis in Ferguson, Missouri, President Barack Obama has urged calm, restraint and respect for the rule of law. But the events in Ferguson have prompted him to call — more openly than he has before — for profound changes to end the racism and distrust that he believes still exists between whites and blacks in the United States. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Online Magazine Gets Kids Discussing Big Questions

Teen culture in America is often criticized for being superficial. But an online magazine has been encouraging some teenagers to explore deeper issues, and rewarding their efforts. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky went to this year’s Kidspirit awards ceremony in New York.
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid