ISLAMABAD: The government is considering appointing Ali Jahangir Siddiqui, the son of a renowned businessman, as Pakistan’s ambassador to the US, sources said.
However, there was no official confirmation of the development. Both the Prime Minister Office and foreign ministry were tightlipped.
It is also not clear whether the government has sent his name to Washington for formal approval. Ambassadors are only appointed when the host country formally gives its assent.
Sources said the proposal for appointing Siddiqui as envoy to the US was under serious consideration after the government decided not to give an extension to the incumbent Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry.
At a weekly news briefing on Thursday, Foreign Office spokesperson Dr Muhammad Faisal said those were administrative matters when asked whether any decision had been taken regarding the appointment of a new ambassador to the US.
Siddiqui, who is currently serving as a special assistant to the prime minister, is the chairman of JS Bank and JS Private Equity and is the son of the eponymous JS – business tycoon Jahangir Siddiqui.
He has some public sector experience as well, having served as a member of the Privatisation Commission, member of the Private Sector Advisory Board of the Planning Commission, member of the Sindh Board of Investment, and as a member of the Community Development Board of the government of Sindh.
He also previously served as executive director of JS Investments. Before moving to Pakistan in 2002, Siddiqui worked in Hong Kong as a director with Crosby Capital, an Asian private equity asset management firm that managed over $400 million – including funds managed on behalf of the Hong Kong and Korean governments.
Siddiqui’s other business interests include the UAE-based Arabian Gulf Steel – Canadian oil and gas company Jura Energy, UAE-based RAK Ghani Glass, and Saudi-based Star Marine Services.
He was also honorary CEO of the charity organization Mahvash and Jahangir Siddiqui Foundation.
Siddiqui holds a BA in economics from Cornell University in New York and was honoured by the World Economic Forum as a Young Global Leader in 2014.