Bringing Trade and Jobs to Terrorism-Affected Areas in Pakistan through Reconstruction Opportunity Zones

In 2009, when the U.S. government sought to establish Reconstruction Opportunity Zones (ROZs) in Pakistan, they turned to Locus founder and CEO Jean-Paul Gauthier. Jean-Paul provided legal advice on the proposed measure, which would have provided manufacturers in designated industrial estates with the ability to reach U.S. markets tariff-free. Jean-Paul served this effort as senior legal advisor to the USAID Empower Pakistan Trade Program on behalf of Deloitte Consulting. Jean-Paul drafted Pakistani legislation for the ROZ program and prepared a roadmap for the planned program's roll-out.

The ROZs were intended to stimulate economic activity and job creation in areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan most impacted by terrorism. They would grant duty-free treatment on certain textile articles not already covered under the Generalized System of Preferences. The covered articles amounted to approximately half of Pakistan's exports to the U.S. The designated zones were:

Gadoon Aamazai Industrial Estate, Pakistan. Image by Sarhad Development Authority.

In 2012, the Obama Administration shelved the ROZ program before it was implemented.