–PM to meet Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to discuss bilateral trade during two-day visit
ISLAMABAD: After reaching Turkey for his first official two-day visit to the country on the invitation of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Prime Minister Imran Khan said that the enhancement of the scope of bilateral trade between Pakistan and Turkey to a higher level is the need of the hour.
Addressing a business forum of the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) in Ankara on Thursday night, he said his government will provide all possible assistance to the Turkish investors in Pakistan.
PM Khan said that Pakistan has huge opportunities for investment and steps are being taken to provide a business-friendly environment to foreign investors.
He said tremendous trade and economic activities will start due to China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). He said special economic zones are being established through this mega project.
The prime minister said the government is focusing on good governance in the country and “we are ensuring the easy trade in Pakistan in foreign investors”.
He said that there is a huge opportunity in the field of tourism, adding that “half of the 20 highest peaks in the world are in Pakistan which reflects its potential for international mountaineers.”
He said Pakistan has 120 million youngsters in its population who can play a vital role in the economy.
The prime minister said 50 million affordable houses will be constructed within the next five years.
Like the FPCCI of Pakistan, TOBB is the highest entity in Turkey representing the private sector with 365 member associations from local chambers of commerce and industry.
The prime minister is accompanied by a high-level delegation, including Minister for Foreign Affairs, Makhdoom Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Minister for Finance Asad Umar; Minister for Planning, Development and Reform Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtyar, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce, Textile, Industry and Production Abdul Razak Dawood, Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua and Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Overseas Pakistanis Zulfikar Bukhari.
Earlier in the day, the PM reached Ankara where he was received by Turkish Minister for Trade Ruhsar Pekjan at the airport upon arrival. He also held a meeting with the minister.
PM Khan was warmly received by Konya Governor Cüneyit (Junaid) Orhan Toprak, Deputy Mayor Mithat Buyukalim, Pakistan’s Ambassador Muhammad Syrus Sajjad Qazi, garrison commander and senior Turkish officials at the Konya airport.
In his brief meeting with the Konya governor, the prime minister said that Pakistan takes pride in its exemplary brotherly relations with Turkey. He said that efforts are being made to take this relationship to newer heights.
The PM also paid homage to the great Sufi saint of the Muslim world Maulana Jalaluddin Rumi as he visited his mausoleum along with his delegation.
The prime minister said that the people of Pakistan have great love for the people of Konya and hold Maulana Jalaluddin Rumi in great reverence. He said that the spiritual message of Maulana Rumi has served to unite humanity from all religions and all walks of life.
He also visited the symbolic grave of Allama Muhammad Iqbal located in Maulana Rumi’s graveyard. The prime minister said that the national poet of Pakistan, Allama Muhammad Iqbal, was the spiritual disciple of Maulana Rumi. Iqbal’s philosophy has been inspired by Rumi’s message of love and self-individuation, he added.
The prime minister also interacted with Pakistani students who are studying at Turkish educational institutes in Konya.
During the visit, the prime minister will also meet the Turkish president and discuss the entire spectrum of bilateral relations between the two countries. Views pertaining to the regional and international situation will also be exchanged.
It is worth mentioning here that Pakistan and Turkey enjoy historic and unparalleled ties based on a common religious and cultural legacy that dates back to centuries. The two countries have excellent political, economic, defence, cultural and people-to-people relations that continue to grow from strength to strength each passing year.
The prime minister’s visit will further reinforce the historic ties between the governments and the people of the two brotherly countries. The visit, moreover, will also help explore new avenues of cooperation and collaboration between the two countries, particularly in the area of economic, trade and commercial relations.