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Old Friday, August 18, 2017
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AOA,

I hope any senior civil servant will address my concerns and in this regard, I thank you in advance.
I want to join the foreign services because I want to sell Pakistan as a brand, I am very fond of international relations and I like having a global perspective. But my concerns are:
a) on foreign depositions will I be able to accommodate my parents? On my own expense of course.
b) I have heard that the lucrative aspect of the foreign service is only realized when one is posted abroad. How frequent is this?
C) I have heard that the much coveted foreign allowance is actually meager if you compare with the costs of living and one has difficulty in meeting ends
D) Are the promotions merit based? I can guarantee hardwork, dedication and commitment, but will I be rewarded according to my performance, i.e posting in developed countries.
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I want to join the foreign services because I want to sell Pakistan as a brand, I am very fond of international relations and I like having a global perspective. But my concerns are:
a) on foreign depositions will I be able to accommodate my parents? On my own expense of course.

ANS. Of course. You can take your parents with you. On your own expense that is right. It will be easy for you since you would be a diplomat.
b) I have heard that the lucrative aspect of the foreign service is only realized when one is posted abroad. How frequent is this?
ANS. 1st 4 years are tough. One gets language course in the 1st 4 years though. Afterwards, one is posted for 3 years abroad. Then at headquarters in Pakistan. Afterwards, all one's life 6 years abroad (3,3 years in 2 countries) and 1 and half year in Pakistan. This wil continue till reirment. So, 80 percent of one's life in service is spent abroad.
C) I have heard that the much coveted foreign allowance is actually meager if you compare with the costs of living and one has difficulty in meeting ends
ANS. The same is true for others services as well. In other groups of CSS cadre, people get starting salary of 35,000. After 10 years of service, they get something like 80,000-90,000.That is way too meagre as compared to 2500 to 3000 $ abroad with free accommodation. Plus, in the long run, salary and perks of FSP are way better.
D) Are the promotions merit based? I can guarantee hardwork, dedication and commitment, but will I be rewarded according to my performance, i.e posting in developed countries.
ANS. U dont remain in limelight in FSP, dats y it has less political interference. If one is brilliant, he gets posted in good countries most of the times. But good and bad postings are part and parcel of every service in CSS. Yes, promotion are merit based.
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