11:43 GMT +324 September 2019
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    A belly dancer performs during the 5th Annual Belly Dance Festival Hip-Nosis 2013 on October 26, 2013 in Bangalore

    Video of Pakistan Wooing Foreign Investors With Belly Dancers at Business Meet Goes Viral

    © AFP 2019 / MANJUNATH KIRAN
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): A spicy video of a belly dance performance staged during a meet of Pakistani industry leaders has gone viral. Many people on social media perceived it as a bid to draw investment into the country.

    Organised by the Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCIP) of Pakistan in neighbouring Azerbaijan, the meet aimed to attract foreign investment to Pakistan.

    The video is doing the rounds on social media with the caption “Naya Pakistan” (New Pakistan) and is being widely mocked for its portrayal of feminine wiles being used to woo investors in a bid to revive Pakistan's economy. While belly dancing is typically associated by Europeans and Americans with 'The East', it more specifically is found in countries such as Turkey, Egypt, Morocco and Lebanon, which were all originally part of the Ottoman Empire. It has never been considered standard fare in the culture of Pakistan, which is an Islamic Republic.  

    The video has been released amid an ongoing economic crisis in Pakistan; the country's annual fiscal deficit has risen to the highest level in 30 years: 8.9 percent for 2018-19.

    Gul Bukhari, a Pakistani columnist and rights activist, shared the video on Twitter, saying “General Doctrine Chief Economist tries to lure investors”.

    Tarek Fatah, a Pakistani-Canadian journalist, and writer also slammed the move by Pakistan’s Chamber of Commerce.

    The controversy instigated netizens who mocked the Pakistani prime minister and his country’s economy.

    Others resorted to memes and jokes and a few of them even went a bit satirical towards Pakistan’s scientific progress.

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