Munir Akram

Munir Akram

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Munir Akram, HQA (born 2 December 1945) was Pakistan Ambassador to the United Nations
Pakistan Ambassador to the United Nations
Pakistan Ambassador to the United Nations or officially the Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the United Nations is the diplomatic head representing Pakistan on all platforms of the United Nations in New York City...

 from 2002 to 2008. Following a regime change in 2008, Ambassador Akram stepped down to pursue a career in the private sector. He was replaced by Hussain Haroon
Hussain Haroon
Abdullah Hussain Haroon is the current Pakistan Ambassador to the United Nations since September 2008. A scion of the Haroon family, he is a businessman, social activist and a former Sindh Assembly speaker who was a board member of various educational institutes, sports associations and charity...

, a politician and a non-career diplomat.

Early career

Munir Akram was born in Karachi, Sindh on 14 February 1945 to Mohammad Akram Shaikh and Mohsina Akram. He has a BA (1963), LLB (1965) and MA (1966) from University of Karachi
University of Karachi
The University of Karachi is a public university located in Karachi, Pakistan. It serves an on-campus student population of more than 24,000. According to the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan, it is ranked among the top three universities of the country...

. He then joined the Foreign Service of Pakistan in 1967 where he had a distinguished diplomatic career spanning over 38 years. His assignments at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Pakistan)
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, also known as Foreign Ministry, is a Government of Pakistan's federal and executive Ministry which is responsible for international and Foreign Affairs. The ministry was created in 1947, and was one of the first ministries to be established...

 include: Section o
Officer (1967–1969), Director at the United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

 Directorate (1975–1979), Director General at the United Nations Directorate (1985–1988) and Additional Foreign Secretary, heading the UN Directorate and Economic Coordination Division (1992–1995).

Akram's designations at the Pakistan missions abroad include: Second Secretary, Pakistan Mission to the United Nations (1969–1974); Counsellor, Pakistan Mission to the United Nations Office at Geneva
United Nations Office at Geneva
The United Nations Office at Geneva is the second-largest of the four major office sites of the United Nations...

 (1979–1982); and Minister, Embassy of Pakistan in Japan
Japan is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of the Sea of Japan, China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south...


During this time, Akram's designations at the United Nations include: Chairman UN Committee for NGO's (1970); Chairman Special Group on 'Most Seriously Affected Countries' by the Oil Crisis at the UN General Assembly’s Special Session on "Raw Materials and Development" (1974); and chairman of the Group on Political Issues, International Women’s Conference, Nairobi (1985). As Vice Foreign Minister, Akram negotiated the Pakistan-India Treaty prohibiting attacks on nuclear facilities (1987).

Ambassadorial career

Munir Akram then was selected as the Pakistan Ambassador to the European Union
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

, Belgium
Belgium , officially the Kingdom of Belgium, is a federal state in Western Europe. It is a founding member of the European Union and hosts the EU's headquarters, and those of several other major international organisations such as NATO.Belgium is also a member of, or affiliated to, many...

 and Luxembourg
Luxembourg , officially the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg , is a landlocked country in western Europe, bordered by Belgium, France, and Germany. It has two principal regions: the Oesling in the North as part of the Ardennes massif, and the Gutland in the south...

 (1988–1992). After serving for a brief time in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Islamabad, Akram was made Pakistan Ambassador to the United Nations Office at Geneva
United Nations Office at Geneva
The United Nations Office at Geneva is the second-largest of the four major office sites of the United Nations...

 (1995–2002). There, he was the President of the Conference on Disarmament (June 1996); Chairman of the WTO Trade Policy Review Body (1997); and Chairman of the Group of 77 in Geneva (1997). Chairperson of the Working Party on the Accession of Oman to the WTO (2000).

In 2002, Munir Akram was appointed as Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the United Nations. Munir Akram has represented Pakistan in numerous United Nations bodies and international conferences, including the Security Council and the Economic and Social Council. At the UN, he was twice the President of the Security Council
United Nations Security Council
The United Nations Security Council is one of the principal organs of the United Nations and is charged with the maintenance of international peace and security. Its powers, outlined in the United Nations Charter, include the establishment of peacekeeping operations, the establishment of...

 (May 2003 and May 2004); President of the Economic and Social Council
United Nations Economic and Social Council
The Economic and Social Council of the United Nations constitutes one of the six principal organs of the United Nations and it is responsible for the coordination of the economic, social and related work of 14 UN specialized agencies, its functional commissions and five regional commissions...

 (2005); Chairperson of the Working Party on the Accession of Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia , commonly known in British English as Saudi Arabia and in Arabic as as-Sa‘ūdiyyah , is the largest state in Western Asia by land area, constituting the bulk of the Arabian Peninsula, and the second-largest in the Arab World...

 to WTO (2005); and Co-Chair for UN Management Reform (2005). President of the Group of 77 Developing Nations & China (2006).

Munir Akram is a prolific writer and has lectured widely on various strategic, political and economic issues. His most recent published work in 2011 is as a contributing authort to 'Pakistan - Beyond the Crisis State'. He has been awarded Hilal-i-Quaid-i-Azam by President of Pakistan
President of Pakistan
The President of Pakistan is the head of state, as well as figurehead, of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Recently passed an XVIII Amendment , Pakistan has a parliamentary democratic system of government. According to the Constitution, the President is chosen by the Electoral College to serve a...

 for his selfless service and devotion to the country.

His forty years experience in the foreign service, his two terms as President of the UN Security Council, his presidency of the UN Economic and Social Council and his numerous top-level contacts with world leaders give him a unique practicioner's perspective on international affairs, global economic issues and Pakistan's foreign policy.

World leaders, friend and foe alike, hold him in great admiration for his honesty, competence and negotiation skills. He also has been viewed as one of the more colorful players in the world foreign policy arena. John Bolton, United States Ambassador to the UN (2005-2006), described him in his book 'Surrender is not an option' as "Munir Akram, the smooth-as-silk Pakistani Ambassador".

Post Ambassadorial career

Since retiring from the diplomatic service in August 2008, Ambassador Akram operates a private advisory company, Gorntazy Group Ltd, whose strategic objective is to help its clients build relationships in the Middle East and Asia, particularly China, with a view of raising capital from these regions and promoting strong trade and economic links between investors, governments and Gorntazy’s clients.

Gorntazy client list include leading financial groups within Private Equity, Hedge Funds and Real Estate. The Group also promotes many unique direct investment opportunities with a focus on natural resources and infrastructure. Gorntazy focuses its marketing on sovereign wealth funds, pension funds as well as targeted institutions/groups and high worth individuals within the GCC and Asia. Since inception, Ambassador Akram’s company has achieved significant success in its objectives.

Ambassador Akram also utilizes his knowledge and relationships in the Middle East and Asia to examine and advise his clients on the political themes as well as economic and business trends in these regions that may impact their particular business activities there.

External links