Pakistan, GCC finalise Joint Action Plan for Strategic Dialogue 2022-2026

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Wednesday finalised the Joint Action Plan for Strategic Dialogue (2022-2026) to help deepen institutional cooperation in various fields including bilateral trade and investment.

The joint action plan was finalised during a detailed meeting between Minister for Foreign Affairs Shah Mahmood Qureshi along and GCC Secretary-General Dr Nayef Falah M Al-Hajraf here.

The development comes in line with the memorandum of understanding (MoU) on Strategic Dialogue between the two sides.

The MoU provides an institutional approach to deepen cooperation in various fields, including political; security; trade and investment; agricultural and food security, transportation; energy; environment; health; culture and education.

Welcoming the finalisation of the Joint Action Plan for Strategic Dialogue, both officials underscored that the action plan would impart a strong impetus towards “optimally realising the tremendous potential for increased cooperation between Pakistan and the GCC states”.

The two sides also reviewed Pakistan-GCC cooperation in diverse fields and explored new avenues for an enhanced mutually-beneficial partnership.

During delegation-level talks, they also exchanged views on the regional developments, in particular the prevailing humanitarian situation in Afghanistan and the deteriorating human rights situation in Indian-Occupied Jammu and Kashmir.

Noting the progress on the ongoing efforts to conclude the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Pakistan and the GCC, the two sides expressed determination to conclude the negotiations on priority.

“Qureshi expressed gratitude to the GCC and its member states for strong expression of support for the people of Afghanistan in the 17th Extraordinary Session of the OIC Council of Foreign Ministers, held in Islamabad last month,” the statement read.

The minister also urged the world community to upscale its efforts to reach out to the Afghan people on an urgent basis to help address the humanitarian crisis and stabilise the economic situation.

It is pertinent to mention here that this is the second visit of the GCC secretary-general to Pakistan in the last three weeks.

He earlier visited Islamabad in December 2021 to attend the 17th Extraordinary Session of the OIC Council of Foreign Ministers (OIC-CFM) on the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan.

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