Former ambassador of the United States to Pakistan Cameron Munter has said it is time for Pakistan to work on good governance and eliminate misappropriation of funds given for the socioeconomic development. “The government of Pakistan has been focusing on the development sector, but now there is a need to work on good governance. Pakistan should utilise the funds given by the US in a fair manner,” the former ambassador remarked while addressing an event at a local hotel in Karachi. He said US has always cooperated with Pakistan and wants strong ties between the two countries. “At the end of Musharraf era, there was hope in the United States to balance the [bilateral] relations, to clear the misconception that the US [always] uses Pakistan [for its gains] then throws it away,” he added while speaking at the event ‘Brunch & Conversation with Ambassador Cameron Munter’. Munter noted that the relations between US and Pakistan have faced several ups and downs and Washington feels that Islamabad does not want to cooperate in the ongoing war against terrorism. He said President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Imran Khan may find ‘some sort of common ground’ if a meeting is held between the two leaders. He said Trump and Khan are in power because they both have ‘very good political sense’. “They have the fingertip feeling, as we say, they’re very clever with people,” he said. Munter said there was a possibility that if the two leaders meet, they find some common ground that could help improve their bilateral relationship. “Not the kind that typical analytical diplomats find, but they may find that there is common ground in some way,” he added. The former US envoy said at a tactical level there was still a sense that the kind of ties the United States has with the Pakistani military are “valuable and important, if for no other reason then that there is still a residual [American] force in Afghanistan”. He said it was the ‘competence’ of the Pakistan military that made them a ‘good partner’ for Washington, and cited the example of the 2010 floods in Pakistan. During the catastrophic floods, he said, he had opted not to call the PPP government to help the affected people and instead approached the Pakistani military. According to the former ambassador, Karachi and Mumbai are financial hubs for the United States because of which it is essential for Washington to maintain good ties with India and Pakistan. He further said the US was aware that the issues could not be resolved through wars and has been working with different countries across the globe in various capacities. He said that the US has also been holding negotiations with India, Russia and China. Published in Daily Times, January 14th 2019.