Pakistan in brief
Major cities: Karachi, Lahore, Faisalabad
Official languages: English, Urdu
Population: About 202 million
Religion: Islam (about 96%)
Area: 796,095 square kilometers (307,373 square miles)
Number of Pakistani expats in Korea: About 11,000
A chemical exchange
Korea and Pakistan established diplomatic relations at the consular level in 1968 and at the ambassadorial level in 1983. Bilateral trade between the two countries in 2015 was $1.07 billion. Pakistani exports to Korea were $284.51 million, while Pakistani imports from Korea were $790.08 million. Major products that Pakistan exported to Korea during the last decade were naphtha, cotton, copper, ethyl alcohol, leather and fish. Major products that Pakistan imported from Korea were pharmaceutical products, iron and steel, organic chemicals, light oils, plastics and electric machinery.
Foreign direct investment from Korea to Pakistan in 2015 was $23 million; over the past decade, it has reached a total of $135 million. Major investments by Korean companies are made in the sectors of manufacturing, construction, wholesale, retail, transportation and power. Among the Korean companies that are actively investing in Pakistan are Lotte Group, Korea Energy Agency, Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power, K-Water, Hyundai Engineering, Daewoo Engineering & Construction as well as Daelim.
Pakistan and Korea have concluded a scoping study for a bilateral free trade agreement and will hold their first round of negotiations next year. The two countries are expected to have a comparative advantage in 700 products if the deal is sealed.
Zahid Nasrullah Khan
Born on Aug. 16, 1962, Zahind Nasrullah Khan has served as the ambassador of Pakistan to Korea since Dec. 18, 2013. Previously he held various diplomatic assignments in Pakistani missions abroad, including Berne in Switzerland (1994-1997), Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, (2000-2004), London (2005-2007) and Doha, Qatar (2007-2011). Khan earned a master’s degree in economics and development economics from the University of Warwick in England. He joined the foreign service in 1987.
He is a golf and tennis enthusiast who enjoys participating in friendly tournaments.
Raheela Nasrullah Khan
Raheela Nasrullah Khan earned her master’s degree in economics from the University of Punjab in Pakistan and worked as a teacher in Pakistan, Jeddah and Doha. Before accompanying her husband to Korea, she was an active member of the Pakistan Foreign Office Women’s Association, focusing mainly on charity work. Now in Seoul, she is the vice president and diplomatic liaison of the Ambassadors Spouses’ Association in Seoul (ASAS), and also an active member in the Korean Red Cross and the Seoul International Women’s Association (SIWA), where she continues to engage in voluntary missions.
She and her husband have one daughter, who recently completed her master’s degree in economics at the Lahore University of Management Sciences in Pakistan.