Economic diplomacy to strengthen economy: FM

Foreign minister says Islamabad is finalizing strategies to soften visa regime with African countries

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our correspondent
ISLAMABAD
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Wednesday has said that Pakistan and other countries in the region are facing challenges including security threats. Addressing a two-day Envoys’ Conference titled ‘Engage Africa’, the minister said Pakistan is willing to promote defence and trade relations with African countries, adding, we jointly want to enhance security situation in the region. Pakistan Army soldiers rendered services in many African countries for maintaining peace under the UN Peacekeeping missions, he stated.
FM Qureshi said we have initiated economic diplomacy under which we are committed to enhance export and strengthen economy by undertaking efforts in various economic sectors. The foreign minister said that over 700 diplomats are getting training in Islamabad. He further expressed hope that this conference will further strengthen mutual relations and economic cooperation of Pakistan with the African countries.
Foreign Minister Qureshi said that Pakistan has political ties with African countries and also increasing its military cooperation with the states. Africa will be proved as South Asia in future in term of development. Pakistan and the region are facing different challenges including security. He added that Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Africa is currently standing at more than $2 trillion and the growth rate of the states is consistently rising.
Qureshi said, “Pakistan has political ties with African countries and its security officials playing a key role in peace establishment in the continent. He was of the view that Africa is not utilizing its skills in full capacity. He added that Islamabad is also willing to enhance its trade ties with the African countries which needed the promotion of governmental and public contacts.
We are promoting diplomacy based on trade with the countries and we also desire to establish bilateral relations at the level of equality with the states. Islamabad is finalizing strategies to soften visa regime with African countries, he added.

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