Over 20 years of experience in public, private and international development sectors, working on national and international/multilateral assignments in the areas of Sustainable Economic Development, Trade and Investment Policy; Private Sector Development; Government Affairs and Liaison; Multilateral and Regional Diplomacy; Institutional Capacity Development and Programme – Project Management.
Currently working as Economist with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, previously worked with the UNCTAD, UNDP, Permanent Mission of Pakistan to the WTO, Ministry of Commerce Pakistan, Board of Investment Pakistan, USAID and EU Projects. Led the multilateral negotiations on Domestic Regulations for Trade in Services as Chairman of the WTO Working Party on Domestic Regulations (2010-2011).
Rich and unique combination of educational and professional qualifications in Economics (M.A and PGD, PhD in-progress), Law (LL.M and LL.B), Public Policy (MPP), Accounting/Finance (FCMA, PFA), and Biotechnology (PGD).
Worked in Asia, Middle East and Europe regions and established extensive professional network. Fluent in English, Urdu, Punjabi, Hindi and working knowledge of French, Arabic and Farsi.
PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE AND ACHIEVEMENTS
FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS
Economist (Trade and Food Security): Geneva, Switzerland (August 2015-present)
- Monitoring the economic policy developments and multilateral and regional trade negotiations in Geneva and preparing analytical studies/reports thereon, for feeding into FAO`s knowledge/analytical work.
- Engaged, through substantive contributions, with Geneva based organizations and dialogues on the specific issues of Agriculture Trade and Food Security.
- Contributing towards FAO’s partnerships with the WTO, UNCTAD, ITC, World Bank, ILO, WIPO, WHO, IOM and other relevant organizations, on issues relevant to the FAO’s mandate.
- Working as FAO’s focal person (in Geneva) on 2030 Development Agenda; contributing to the Geneva SDG Hub and other relevant activities.
- Keeping a liaison and responding to requests from Permanent Missions in Geneva on FAO’s position and recommendations with regard to international trade and related economic issues.
- Providing policy advice, technical assistance and solutions to regional, sub-regional and country offices of the FAO for their services to respective constituencies.
- Contribute and participate on other activities of the Geneva office of FAO, particularly in the issues of resilience, human rights, climate change, social and solidarity economy.
- Designing and implementing country programme support plans for implementation of FAO’s support on agriculture and food security issues, including through use of the Trade Facilitation measures under WTO TFA or unilateral actions by countries.
- Working as FAO’s focal person for the UN Interagency CEB Cluster on Trade and Productive Capacity, designing and implementing the country specific programmes on establishing policy linkages between trade and global value chains.
- Designing, collaborating and delivering various capacity development activities, workshops and seminars on economic and trade related issues.
UNITED NATIONS CONFERENCE ON TRADE AND DEVELOPMENT
Economic Affairs Officer: Geneva, Switzerland (Sep 2013-Aug 2015)
- While working in the Office of the Director, coordinated the activities of Division on International Trade in Goods, Services and Commodities (DITC) on substantive, institutional and outreach issues on the international economic and trade issues.
- Contributed, as member of the UNCTAD team, on post-2015 development issues and integration of trade in sustainable economic development agenda setting. Contributed towards research and analysis submitted during the negotiations on Post-2015 Development Agenda and Financing for Development.
- Contributed towards UNCTAD`s substantive work on Trade in Services and ensuing policy implications and global value/supply chains, including delivering technical assistance and capacity building assignments in this area.
- Worked as focal person for the DITC on interaction with other international organizations and civil society.
- Represented UNCTAD in the UN Interagency Task Force on Non-communicable diseases, and developed a work cluster (and 4 publications) on “trade and public health” in UNCTAD.
- Worked with the OECD, World Bank and other organizations on delivering joint analytical work for G-20.
- Provided policy advisory and implemented a capacity development project to support the African Union and Regional Economic Communities, towards negotiations of the Continental Free Trade Agreement and enhancing regional economic integration. Managed a team of consultants for various studies and technical inputs during the implementation phased.
- Successfully completed a special assignment, given by the UNCTAD Secretary-General, to enhance visibility and engagement (with Membership) of UNCTAD’s office in New York.
- Managed the budget, administration and human resources issues of the DITC that has a staff of over 70 officials.
UNITED NATIONS DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME (UNDP)
Programme Manager: Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain (Jan 2012- Aug 2013)
- Led the UNDP Programme in Bahrain on “Support to Enhancing Institutional Capacity for Global Economic Environment and Governance”.
- Provided policy advisory and technical assistance to the Ministry of Industry and Commerce Bahrain on trade policy related issues in particular the WTO and ongoing regional and bilateral FTA
- Managed different institutional capacity building projects for stakeholders (public and private sector) in the areas related to economic governance.
- Developed the decision support system and analytical tools for Ministry of Industry and Commerce in the areas of Trade negotiations, Intellectual Property and Standards.
- Managed the institutional reengineering project for three departments under the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, Bahrain.
- Established the institutional linkages between different public sector ministries/agencies dealing with economic and trade governance and the private sector and civil society in order to strengthen the policy design and implementation mechanism.
- Contributed, on behalf of the UNDP, in Bahrain Economic Development Plans (different phases and special initiatives)
- Managed different consultants for delivery of knowledge products during implementation phase.
PERMANENT MISSION OF PAKISTAN TO THE WTO
Commercial Counsellor: Geneva, Switzerland (March 2006-Dec 2011)
- Represented Pakistan as lead negotiator in the Doha Development Agenda negotiations of the WTO; primarily dealt with the areas of Trade in, Services (GATS), Agriculture, Intellectual Property (TRIPS), Trade Facilitation, Trade & Environment and Trade & Development.
- Led the DDA negotiations on Services Domestic Regulations as elected Chairman of the WTO GATS Working Party on Domestic Regulations (WPDR) for two years, 2010-2011. Managed to produce a draft Text leading towards finalization of the process and outcome. Worked closely with different regional groups.
- Represented Pakistan in the WTO Councils and committees and related work for the agreements on Trade in Services (GATS), Agriculture (AoA), Intellectual Property (TRIPS), Sanitary and Phyto-Sanitary Measures (SPS), Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT), Rules of Origin (ROO), Trade & Environment, Trade & Development, Trade Policy Review Body, Dispute Settlement Body, Working Group on Trade, Debt and Finance and Working Group on Technology Transfer.
- Coordinated Pakistan’s negotiation position through consistent liaison and dialogue with stakeholders including government ministries and departments, private sector, civil society organizations, think tanks and media.
- Worked as liaison officer and focal point on behalf of Pakistan’s mission for ITC, World Bank, UNCTAD, WHO, ILO, WIPO and similar organizations.
- Dealt with cross cutting issues of Public Health (such as compulsory licensing, FCTC), Technology Transfer and Market Access through GSP schemes (particularly in the EU).
- Prepared policy papers, briefs and did advocacy and liaison work on these issue, on behalf of Pakistan.
- Worked as Head of Chancery for the Mission. Managed financial, administrative and human resources affairs in liaison with relevant authorities.
- Worked as elected member of the management board of WTO pension plan. Kept involved in designing the investment strategy and managing portfolio.
USAID: IRAQ ECONOMIC GROWTH AND EMPLOYMENT GENERATION PROJECT
Trade Policy and WTO Accession Advisor: Baghdad, Iraq (April 2005 – Feb 2006)
- Advised the Government of Iraq for Market Access opportunities and adopting a trade policy in conformance with the multilateral obligations.
- Prepared the Memorandum on Foreign Trade Regime (MFTR, the basic document for WTO accession) for Iraq to be submitted to the World Trade Organization.
- Led the Trade Policy component for IZDIHAR project managing various consultants and local experts. I also managed the financial and administrative affairs for my component.
- Advised the Government of Iraq on Agriculture, Intellectual Property and Trade in Services areas for the accession process and institutional capacity building for the implementation period.
- Provided Technical Assistance for revision of the Copyright law for Iraq in order to bring that in conformity with international standards.
- Advised the Government of Iraq to establish the SPS and TBT focal and enquiry points.
- Advised and helped in establishing the specialized organization for Government of Iraq dealing with Intellectual Property Rights and a coalition of Service industries in Iraq.
- Conducted capacity building and awareness activities for public and private sector stakeholders dealing with WTO issues particularly the agreements on Agriculture, TRIPS and
MINISTRY OF COMMERCE, PAKISTAN
Section Officer (WTO): Islamabad, Pakistan (November 2001- April 2005)
- Conducted analysis and undertook implementation steps for the WTO agreements in Pakistan. I was specifically working on General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS), Agreement on Agriculture (AOA), Dispute Settlement Understanding & Trade Related Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).
- Developed the Negotiating Toolkit and Decision Matrix for Trade in Services negotiations for Pakistan, in the WTO and bilateral negotiations.
- Updated the local Laws, regulations and policies in order to bring these in conformance with WTO regime particularly Pakistan Trade Marks Rules 2004. Contributed in drafting new laws for Data exclusivity, Geographical Indications and Plant Breeders Rights.
- Prepared Pakistan’s Schedule of Commitments (after analysis and consultations with stakeholders) under GATS (Services) negotiations for submission to the WTO.
- Worked as team member in drafting the law and establishing the Intellectual Property Organization of Pakistan.
- Assisted in formulation of Trade Policy to get maximum development aspect out of it. Contributed chapters and write-ups in the Economic and Trade Policy Frameworks.
- Worked as coordinator of the WTO Wing on the Pakistan Trade Policy Project by DFID, EU & ITC. Managed the financial, reporting and auditing affairs of these projects.
BOARD OF INVESTMENT, GOVERNMENT OF PAKISTAN
Assistant Director: Islamabad, Pakistan (Aug 2000–Nov 2001)
- Dealt with Foreign Direct Investment in Pakistan from Americas & European Regions. Worked with the foreign investors to deal with regulatory and related issues For FDI.
- Conducted situation analysis of various industrial and services sectors in order to develop the investment policies for subject sectors.
- Coordinated the feasibility studies for various potential sectors for foreign investment.
- Worked as team member for execution, implementation and review of Investment Policy of Pakistan.
- Managed two investment road shows for Pakistan in Germany and UK in December 2000.
- Coordinated the Asian Development Bank’s Technical Assistance project for the BOI.
NEXIA INTERNATIONAL (S.M.MASOOD & CO), PAKISTAN
Management Trainee: Lahore, Pakistan (August 1996- August 1999)
- Worked on accounting/ financial reporting and auditing of various entities in private sector, public companies, NGOs, Multinationals, and Government Corporations etc.
- Worked on taxation management and compliance, pleading of the various levels of tax clients ranging from individual to Multinationals and big projects.
- Provided management consultancy to different clients of private and public sectors.
- Led team for a special audit and evaluation assignment for a hydal dam project (USD 80 million).
- Led the team for financial assessment and evaluation of a railway project for privatization.
International Development-short term Projects Experience
- Apr-June 2011: Trade Policy Expert/Team Leader for an EU funded Formulation Mission for Yemen Economic Support Programme.
- Sep-Nov 2010: Trade Policy Expert/Team Leader for an EU funded Needs Assessment Mission for designing capacity building programme for Iraqi officials in the area of treaty understanding and negotiations.
- July-August 2006: Economic/National Expert for Midterm review of EU Trade Related Technical Assistance project for Pakistan.
- July-August 2005: Trade Policy/National Expert for an EC funded Need Assessment for Pakistan’s Trade Policy.