| Shehbaz says both nations natural allies, stood test of times
| Erdogan resolves to take mutual trade to $5 billion annually
ANKARA: Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif and President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan Wednesday renewed their pledge to upgrade the excellent bilateral ties between the two brotherly countries to new heights by infusing new vigour of bilateral cooperation in diverse fields.
Addressing a joint press briefing after holding a meeting, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said that the relationship between the two countries was embedded deep into history and shaped by shared goals. These ties transcended times and continued from generations to generations, he added.
Both leaders also agreed to holding of 7th High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council (HLSCC), a primary platform at the leadership-level, in Islamabad this year during the month of September.
He said this year, the two countries were celebrating 75th year anniversary of the establishment of their diplomatic ties.
The prime minister while terming his meeting with president Erdogan very productive, expressed the hope that under the dynamic leadership of the president, the bilateral ties would scale to new heights.
He said that they had heart to heart and very productive discussions.
The prime minister said the two countries were engaged at the high level which was instrumental in exploring and building their shared goals.
He said they were looking towards holding of 7th High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council (HLSCC), a primary platform at the leadership-level, in Islamabad this year during the month of September, very productive.
The prime minister said the visit of Turkish strong business delegation to Pakistan would further provide impetus to the trade and investment cooperation and resolved to make the visit very solid and result oriented.
He said Turkey had made exponential progress in the field of hydropower generation and renewable energy and Pakistan was keen for its support and cooperation in terms of profitable investment by the Turkish companies which would provide low cost energy to Pakistan, thus proving to be ‘a win-win situation.
Citing the launch of MILGEM-class ship PNS Badar in Karachi on May 20, jointly constructed by Pakistan and Turkey, the prime minister said it was ‘a shining example of the excellent cooperation’ between the two countries in defence sector.
He said Pakistan and Turkey would be exploring further joint ventures in the defence sector. He said both brotherly countries were natural partners as the two nations had stood with each other in time of need and over core interests.
Prime minister Sharif said the people of Pakistan deeply appreciated the Turkish leadership’s steadfast support over the Kashmir issue.
Lauding the unflinching support of Turkey, he said that Kashmiris have been struggling for their legitimate right and had been subjected to Indian atrocities for over seven decades. The prime minister also cited Indian government’s attempts at demographic changes in IIOJK.
He reiterated that Pakistan would not abandon its quest for peace but it was convinced that peace in South Asia was possible if the long standing issue of Kashmir was resolved under the UNSC resolutions and in line with the wishes of the Kashmiri people.
The prime minister reaffirmed Pakistan’s support to Turkey over Northern Cyprus and resolved that Pakistan stood with Turkey in its fight against terrorism and terrorist groups like PKK. “Enemies of Turkey are the enemies of Pakistan,” he said.
The prime minister said both countries had worked for decade for their shared goals of a peaceful and stable Afghanistan. The countries had hosted the largest refugees in the world with their scarce resources.
He said the warm bonds between the two countries had been close to their hearts, as these went beyond the conventional ties and diplomatic niceties. The bond of friendship was rooted deeply in history and intertwined in the very fabric of their respective society.
President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan, in his remarks, said during their meeting, they had discussed the regional and international issues in detail.
They also reaffirmed to enhance the scope of bilateral ties, he said, adding the high level meeting would be held in Islamabad in September which would further provide opportunity to the both countries to further foster their brotherly ties.
President Erdogan resolved that the close friendship and cooperation between the two countries would be further strengthened.
He said that the two countries were also moving on with the defence cooperation projects and cited construction of ships.
President Erdogan said the mutual trade between the two countries had also soared to over $1 billion and they were resolved to take it to $5 billion annually.
He said tourism, education, logistic and civil aviation were the some other sectors in which they had been working to enhance cooperation.
The president underlined the need for the business companies of the both countries to increase the mutual investment as it was a driving engine for their economies.
He assured to encourage Turkish companies to increase their invest in Pakistan.
Earlier, the two leaders also witnessed the signing of various agreements and MoUs for enhanced cooperation in diverse areas of mutual interests.
Earlier, President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan Wednesday warmly received Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif upon his arrival at the Presidential Complex.
The prime minister arrived at the Presidential Complex to meet the Turkish president.
On the occasion, national anthems of the both countries were played and the prime minister inspected the guard of honour along with President Erdogan.
Later, both the leaders were introduced to the delegations of the two countries.
PM LAYS WREATH AT ATATÜRK’s MAUSOLEUM
PM Shehbaz Sharif Wednesday visited the mausoleum of first president and founding father of the Republic of Turkey Mustafa Kemal Ataturk and laid a wreath there.
The PM, who is on a three-day official visit here, also observed a minute of silence to pay respect to the great Turkish leader.
Accompanied by a high-level delegation, Shehbaz Sharif arrived here Tuesday with a hectic agenda including his interaction with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, businessmen and investors.
PREVIOUS GOVT RUINED PROJECTS
PM Shehbaz Sharif Wednesday said that out of political animosity, the previous government ruined all the projects initiated by the preceding governments.
The prime minister, in separate meetings with Turkish investors, during his three-day official visit here, said that unfortunately, a conspiracy was hatched to discourage the investment in Pakistan. However, he said that his government’s priority was to facilitate all the investors by addressing their issues.
He said previously as the Punjab chief minister, he had saved $90 million from the contract signed with the Lahore Waste Management Company. In a meeting with the prime minister, a delegation of Turkish firm Siyahkalem, headed by President Cengiz Ozdemir, expressed confidence in the measures taken by his government to encourage foreign investment in Pakistan.
The delegation expressed its keen interest in the projects in the fields of solar, wind, hydel energy as well as housing construction.
A delegation of Arcelic, led by Chief Commercial Officer Can Dincer, also met the prime minister and appreciated his government’s steps to facilitate the foreign investors.
Chief Executive Officer of Zorlu Energy, along with a delegation, called on Shehbaz Sharif and expressed the interest to invest in the energy sector of Pakistan.
It was informed that soon after the incumbent government was formed, the work on the projects had been resumed which was halted due to the previous government’s negligence.
During his meeting with President of Albayrak, Ahmed Albayrak, the prime minister was told that the previous government’s spokesperson had damaged the company’s reputation and was pressured to wind up its operations in Pakistan.
The prime minister assured the delegation to resolve all the issues and invited the company to invest in the country.
Vice President of Turkish firm Hayat Kimya Ali Zaybuk, along with a delegation, also called on the prime minister and conveyed his company’s interest in enhancing the volume of investment in Pakistan.
PAK-TURK TRADE POTENTIAL
Turkish Commerce Minister Dr. Mehmet Mus called on Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Wednesday and exchanged views with him on benefiting from the trade potential existing between the two countries. The prime minister called the need for strengthening the trade mechanisms between the two countries to expand its scope.
The PM particularly underscored the importance of increasing bilateral trade volume to US$5 billion over the next three years. He also underlined the resolve to fully facilitate Turkish companies in Pakistan to enhance trade.
COORDINATION ON REGIONAL, INT’L MATTERS,
PM Shehbaz Sharif on Wednesday highlighted the convergence between the two countries on a range of regional and international issues and stressed the need for continued close coordination.
The prime minister expressed these views in a meeting with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavusoglu, in Ankara.
While receiving the Turkish Foreign Minister, the prime minister noted that the bilateral relations were exceptionally warm as the people of the two countries shared special bonds that dated back centuries.
He recalled the support extended by the two countries to each other in times of need.
PM Shehbaz Sharif deeply lauded the personal contribution of the Turkish Foreign Minister in advancing bilateral relations and for playing an important role in strengthening existing institutional mechanisms of cooperation between the two countries.
In this context, the importance of the 7th session of the High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council (HLSCC) was highlighted and the substantive preparations for it were reviewed.
The prime minister particularly underscored the importance of increasing bilateral trade volume to US$5 billion over the next three years.
He also underlined the resolve to fully facilitate Turkish companies in Pakistan and invited them to invest in diverse sectors including food processing, agriculture, automotives, information technology, hydel, solar, and wind energy.
PM, TURKISH FM MEETING
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavusoglu called on Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and discussed ways to promote bilateral relations between Pakistan and Turkey. The meeting also discussed the promotion of cooperation in different sectors, particularly trade, investment, education, communication
PM Sharif said the historical and brotherly relations between Pakistan and Turkey were witnessing a new dimension leading to the progress of the two nations.
He said Pakistan and Turkey had a similarity of views on international issues and the people of the two countries stood by each other in difficult times.
Shehbaz said Turkey made rapid progress under the leadership of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, terming it a role model for other nations.
The Turkish foreign minister said Turkey and Pakistan had deep-rooted relations and expressed his government’s desire to strengthen ties in multifarious areas.
PM INVITES TURKISH INVESTORS
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif Wednesday invited the Turkish investors to explore Pakistan’s diverse sectors, particularly the energy sector, offering immense opportunities and scope for development.
Addressing the Pakistan Turkey Business Council under the DEIK – Foreign Economic Relations Board, he said Pakistan’s energy sector with its vast potential in hydel, thermal, coal, wind, and solar areas could prove ideal for the Turkish investors.
The leading businessmen and investors from Turkey and Pakistan participated in the meeting.
President DEIK Nail Olpak and Chair Turkish-Pakistan Business Council Ahmet Cengiz Özdemir introduced the participating companies and briefed the prime minister about Turkish investments in Pakistan.
PM Shehbaz Sharif said a number of leading Turkish investors had already made investments in Pakistan, and assured full cooperation by his government to pursue their projects.
He said given the growing energy needs and high global energy prices, Pakistan direly needed improvement in its energy sector and emphasized that the Turkish investment would be a win-win situation. Pakistan could benefit from Turkey’s expertise in building and managing dams for water conservation, he added.
Giving an overview of the economic and investment opportunities in Pakistan, the prime minister highlighted his focus on energy, housing, textiles, infrastructure development, agro-based industry, and oil and gas sectors.
The prime minister said Pakistan and Turkey must engage with renewed resolve and commitment to building upon the solid foundation, and to take the relationship to new heights, particularly in the vital fields of commercial, economic and investment cooperation.
He also emphasized that Turkish textile companies could explore the sector for joint ventures, especially for intra-industry trade as well as becoming partners in regional and global value chains. He also invited the Turkish firms relating to the agro-industrial sector and dairy farming, and said ample opportunities existed in those sectors.
The prime minister stressed that Pakistani and Turkish companies could also work together in the oil and gas sector. They could collaborate not only in exploration and production but in building refineries and pipelines, he said.
Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Minister for Commerce and Investment Syed Naveed Qamar, and Minister for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb were also present.
PM WANTS TO PROMOTE PAK-TURKISH TRADE
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Wednesday said that Pakistan sincerely wanted to work with Turkish business fraternity to transform brotherhood into promoting bilateral trade, investment and culture.
Minister for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb in a tweet, quoting the PM as saying, “We genuinely and sincerely want to work with Turkish business fraternity to transform our brotherhood into promoting our bilateral trade, investment and culture”.
Prime Minister stated this while addressing Turkish Business Council in Ankara. The minister also shared pictures of the PM’s address in her tweet.
PAKISTAN, TURKEY SIGN AGREEMENTS, MOUS
Pakistan and Turkey on Wednesday signed various bilateral agreements and memorandums of understanding (MOUs) for enhanced cooperation in diverse areas of mutual interest, including trade, economy, communication, environment and housing.
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan witnessed the signing of bilateral agreements and MOUs.
Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Minister for Commerce and Investment Syed Naveed Qamar and Turkish ministers for Trade and Transport signed the documents on behalf of their respective governments.
The bilateral documents signed between the two countries included: a memorandum of understanding between the Turkish Presidency of Strategy and Budget, and Pakistan’s Public Private Partnership Authority. A Framework for Knowledge Sharing Programme between the governments of Turkey and Pakistan.
A memorandum of understanding was signed on Highway Engineering between the Turkish Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure and Pakistan’s Ministry of Communications.
Similarly, a joint Ministerial Statement on Developing Bilateral Trade and Economic Relations between Turkey and Pakistan. Besides, a Technical Cooperation Protocol was signed between the Turkish Ministry of Treasury and Finance and Pakistan’s Ministry of Finance.
Moreover, a Cooperation Protocol on Debt Management was signed between the Turkish Ministry of Treasury and Finance, and Pakistan’s Ministry of Economic Affairs.
While a memorandum of understanding between the Turkish Ministry of Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change, and NAYA Pakistan Housing and Development Authority (NAPHDA) was signed on Cooperation in the field of housing.