Senate Chairman discusses trade ties with Mashhad Governor

Chairman Senate of Pakistan Syed Nayyer Hussain Bukhari who is on a visit to Mashhad, Iran, held a meeting with the Governor General of Khorasan-e-Razavi, Dr. Mehmood Salahi in his office on Saturday. Both sides discussed matters of mutual interests, including bilateral relations, regional and global affairs, and ways and means to bolster relations between the two countries.
Dr. Salahi referred to the strong bonds of relations existing between Iran and Pakistan expressing that the two countries have many commonalities. They are brotherly Muslim countries that share common borders and culture. The two countries have much potential that can be utilized for the betterment of their people. He referred to the existing cooperation in different fields between Iran and Pakistan and said that Iran was assisting in a number of projects in the province of Punjab. He said Pakistan has abundant resources including food and agricultural resources, fertile land, abundant water for irrigation and good manpower. Pakistan can export its surplus food produce to Iran and in exchange, Iran is ready to export different items like fertilizer and chemical products etc to Pakistan.
He said potential exists between the two countries for increasing trade from its present level of U.S. 1.5 billion dollars to US$ 5 billion per year. He also said that he had proposed construction of Metro in Lahore to the Chief Minister Punjab, during his visit to Pakistan last year. He added “for investment security was extremely important”.
Dr. Salahi also expressed readiness of Iran to import whatever quantity of meat was available from Pakistan. On the Iran and Pakistan gas pipeline project he said the pipeline was laid up to Pakistan border. The Chairman Senate thanked the Governor General of Khorasan e Razavi for the warm welcome and hospitality extended to him and said that he would be taking up these proposals with concerned Ministries in Pakistan for their consideration. He said Iran has always stood by Pakistan in difficult times and referred to the assistance of the Government of Iran during the devastating floods that hit Pakistan in 2010.
Thanking the Iranian leadership for the assistance, The Chairman Senate said Pakistan was facing terrorism stressing that “Pakistan wanted peace in the region” and that Iran could play an important role.
The chairman senate said he believed that people to people contact and communication was extremely important for strengthening relationship among the two nations. Therefore, traveling through border crossings should be facilitated for pilgrims (zaireen) and businessmen. He stressed that railways and air links have to be established and improved, and that similar to the air service existing between Mashhad and Lahore, air service between Mashhad and Islamabad should also be worked out to facilitate ‘Zaireen’ from Northern parts of Pakistan.
Appreciating the proposal for construction of Metro, Syed Nayyer Hussain Bokhari said that he would also propose such a project for the capital city of Islamabad.