Sanjrani calls for bolstering ties with Central Asian republics, Arab countries

ISLAMABAD: Senate Chairman Muhammad Sadiq Sanjrani, while exchanging views with the foreign ministers of Iraq, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan who called on him here at the Parliament House on Wednesday, stressed the need for bolstering ties with Central Asian republics and Arab countries. During the meeting with Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein, the Senate chairman said Pakistan had close relations with the Islamic countries of the Arab world. Iraq and Pakistan had long-standing and friendly ties deep-rooted in shared faith, values and culture, he added.

“We share the same point of views on international forums and are supportive of each other’s positions”, he underlined. Pakistan, he said, acknowledged the successes of Iraq in the fight against terrorism and appreciated the resilience of the Iraqi people in their efforts to overcome myriad of challenges. Both sides stressed the need to further enhance cooperation in the areas of trade, investment, education, technology, infrastructure development, and security.

Meanwhile, during the meeting with KazakhForeign Minister Mukhtar Beskenuly Tileuberdi, Sanjrani said Pakistan provided unlimited opportunities for investments. He also lauded the Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) signed between Pakistan and Kazakhstan for boosting cooperation in diverse fields.

“The Central Asian republics and Pakistan are making collective efforts for the restoration of peace and stability in Afghanistan, and the laying of rail and road networks,” he underscored.

Sanjrani highlighted that Pakistan’s unique geo-economic location offered tremendous opportunities for transport, trade, transit trade and ICT (information communication technology) connectivity to the entire region. He observed that greater regional integration would help drive growth and socio-economic development in the entire region.

Both the dignitaries agreed to elevate the bilateral trade volume, which was currently low and needed to be enhanced further. During the meeting with Kyrgyz Foreign Minister Ruslan Kazakbaev, the Senate chairman called for further strengthening of trade linkages with Bishkek to fully exploit the potential existing between the two countries. To promote bilateral cooperation, he said, the high-level and parliamentary exchanges were important, besides exploring collaboration in the cultural domain.

He stressed that air connectivity was vital for an increase in trade, business and people-to-people contacts. Tourism was a priority area for both the countries with huge economic potential, he added.

Sanjrani reiterated that Pakistan could support Kyrgyzstan, a landlocked nation, by providing the shortest and most viable land route access to the Arabian Sea, Middle East and African markets.

He  thanked the delegations, who participated in the 48th OIC Council of FMs. He called for boosting bilateral ties in all major fields with the Kyrgyz republic, saying both the countries had supported each other’s stance at multi-lateral forums and further wanted to enhance bilateral partnership. Sanjrani stated that all CAR countries, including Kyrgyzstan, should benefit from investment opportunities in Gwadar. Both sides agreed for continuous joint efforts to further cement linkages at the multi-lateral forum.

During the meetings, the Senate chairman highlighted the Kashmir issue, and called upon the global community to play its role. Sanjrani stressed the need for resolving the Kashmir issue as per the resolutions of the United Nations and the aspirations of the Kashmiris. He urged, in particular, to the Muslim community, to raise voices against Indian barbarism in the occupied Kashmir.

The visiting dignitaries thanked Sanjrani for the warm welcome and termed Pakistan an important country in the region. They also hailed Islamabad’s role for peace in the region. Senate Deputy Chairman Mirza Muhammad Afridi, senators Manzoor Ahmad Kakar, Zarqa Suharwardy Taimur and Palwasha Khan, and Secretary Senate Mohammad Qasim Samad Khan were also present during the meetings.