Scotland business

Consultant Richard Cook signs major Pakistan agreements

Richard Cook
Image caption Mr Cook is a former vice-chairman of the Scottish Conservative Party

A consultancy firm run by a prominent Scottish Tory has signed agreements to deliver environmental projects in Karachi worth nearly $1bn (£640m).

Richard Cook, chief executive of Cook Consulting (UK) Ltd, signed memoranda of understanding (MoU) with Pakistani officials this week.

The signing ceremony took place at Glasgow City Chambers in the presence of the governor of Sindh province.

Mr Cook is a former vice-chairman of the Scottish Conservatives.

Under one of the agreements, Cook Consulting - along with Canadian firm Sentinel Waste International and USA-based Aeromix Systems Inc - undertook to work with the Port Qasim Authority to develop drinking water production facilities through desalination.

It aims to produce 97 million gallons a day of drinking water, and involves estimated total capital investment of $775m.

A similar agreement was signed with Karachi Water and Sewerage Board to develop a desalination plant, with an estimated investment of about $85m.

Another MoU was signed with Karachi Port Trust, targeting treatment of 60 million gallons a day of waste water, with an estimated capital investment to Pakistan of $100m. In that project, Cook Consulting is being partnered by Northamptonshire firm Point Green Limited.

Mr Cook said: "These projects will be extremely significant in developing an infrastructure in Karachi which provides its population with significant environmental and health benefits."

Mr Cook is a prominent figure in Scottish Conservatives circle, having stood as a parliamentary candidate in several elections - most recently in the Westminster seat of East Renfrewshire in 2010.