Pak extends full economic Cooperation for Afghanistan’s flourishment: Moeed Yusuf
Harmonies AF-PAK ties to usher in prosperity across the borders: says NA Speaker
Islamabad: Speaker Asad Qaiser National Assembly has termed relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan eternal and intertwined in the bonds of religion, history and culture. The Speaker said that connecting people, building peace and promoting cooperation between Afghistan and Pakistan was in the best interest of both the countries. The Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser said this while addressing the meeting of the 7th Pakistan Afghanistan Joint Committee in Islamabad, today. The meeting of the Joint Committee is being attended by eminent personalities from Pakistan and Afghistan.
Wide range of issues including enhancing bilateral relations, connecting people, building peace and promoting cooperation between Pakistan and Afghanistan were discussed.
Speaker Asad Qaiser while addressing the meeting said that people of Pakistan regardless of ethnicities are bound together by everlasting cultural, religious and historic affinities. He said that a peaceful Afghanistan was in the larger interest of the Pakistan. He commended the commitment of political leadership of both the countries for fostering parliamentary, economic and people to people relations. He said that Parliament feeling the need to bring both the countries more closely activated the Parliamentary Friendship Group comprising all the political parties in the parliament.
Apprising the meeting about his Parliamentary initiatives, the Speaker Asad Qaiser said that recommendations on removing impediments hindering the smooth trade and peoples’ movement across the border have been addressed and recommendation thereupon were forwarded to Executive.
Islamabad: There is certainly a positive trajectory with regards to Pakistan-Afghanistan bilateral relations. In the last few months both sides have achieved significant progress, though there is a lot still to be done. For the first time, the parliaments on both sides are playing a very active role in addressing issues of mutual interest. Complex issues accumulating over years would take some time for resolution. This was said by Ambassador Muhammad Sadiq, Prime Minister’s Special Representative for Afghanistan. He was speaking to the 7th Pakistan Afghanistan Joint Committee (PAJC) meeting, spearheaded by Center for Research and Security Studies (CRSS) and Organization for Economic Studies and Peace (OESP). Trade is and should always be the connecting link between the two nations. It also promotes people to people contacts, along with a lot of economic opportunities for the people, particularly the ones residing in border areas. We are also looking into investing into each other countries, which reinforces our push for increased trade, paving way for shared stakes and mutual interests. This in turn would materialize into durable peace and sustainable development in the region, stated Sadiq.He further stated that Islamabad’s seriousness in mending trust deficit and starting a new chapter in the bilateral relationship with Kabul reflects in the number of steps the Government of Pakistan have initiated within last six months. These include: introduction of liberal and friendly visa regime for Afghanistan, making it easy for Afghans to do business and open bank accounts inside Pakistan, decision to open 12 border markets with Afghanistan, and pipeline projects like tele-medical centers in Afghanistan and railway link between the countries. Sadiq assured that the progress on bilateral front would pick pace in coming months.Later in the afternoon, PAJC members called on Dr. Moeed Yusuf, SAPM on National Security and Strategic Policy Planning. He was of the view that Track II process, instead running parallel to Track I, should in fact complement Track I and assist it by providing the government with targeted policy proposals. He thanked the efforts of CRSS in this regard. He then apprised the Afghan participants that today’s Pakistan is a new Pakistan; a lot has changed over last two decades. We have a new security paradigm now with economic security at its core.Dr. Yusuf further urged the delegates that to move forward, both sides have to let go of the past. He also mentioned that our region has been misused by global powers for so long. We need to get segregated from these dirty games. On Pakistan’s role in Afghan peace process, He stated that Islamabad, supports Afghan led and Afghan owned peace process.