GERMAN UNITY DAY - THE MOST MAGNIFICENT DIPLOMATIC ACTIVITY OF ISLAMABAD - WARM FEELINGS SENT TO GERMANY FROM PAKISTAN

Founder Editor Tazeen Akhtar..

Islamabad (Tazeen Akhtar+ APP) German Reunification (Unity) Day was celebrated at the embassy on 29th Sep 2016 with full enthusiasm. It was the biggest diplomatic event of the year in the capital city. Notables from all walks of life participated in the celebration and expressed their solidarity with German nation. Ambassador Ina Lepel hosted a grand reception on this auspicious occasion. Ministers, High Government and Military officials of Pakistan, Senior Politicians. Business Community, Envoys, Journalists were present.

BACK GROUNDER

The Day of German Unity is the national day of Germany, celebrated on 3 October as a public holiday. It commemorates the anniversary of German reunification in 1990, when the goal of a united Germany that originated in the middle of the 19th century, was fulfilled again. Former GDR officially joined the Federal Republic of Germany. The fall of the Berlin Wall on the 9th of November in 1989, which marked the end of the Cold War, had paved the way for German reunification barely a year later. The Unification Treaty that was signed on the 20th of September in 1990 and declares the 3rd of October the national holiday sealed the end of the division of Germany.

MINISTER INFORMATION PAKISTAN CONGRATULATES GERMAN NATION

In Islamabad Celebration, Mr. Pervaiz Rashid, Federal Minister for Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage was chief guest.

He congratulated German nation on the day and said “Pakistan values its relations with Germany. We are committed to further enhancing our relations both at bilateral level and in the context of European Union. Pakistan is keen to enhance bilateral contacts, trade and cooperation in defence, counter-terrorism, renewable energy, information technology and automotive industry.”

“With the commencement of strategic dialogue between Pakistan and Germany, relations between the two states have been moving from strength to strength. Pakistani Diaspora in Germany has played an equally important role in strengthening this relationship,” he said.

Minister said that “Pakistan was an investor-friendly country and  would welcome increased German investments, especially in  renewable energy and automotive industry.There is a lot of scope and potential for the German investors to invest in Pakistan. Both the countries need to work towards expanding Foreign Direct Investment in energy, infrastructure development, agriculture and agro-based industry, mining, oil and gas exploration.”

Pervaiz Rashid said Germany had been one of Pakistan’s largest trading partners; it always extended support to Pakistan in both commercial and social sectors. “We are especially thankful to Germany for its role in grant of GSP plus status to Pakistan.”

He noted that Germany was the fifth largest economy in the world and technologically an advanced country. “The total trade volume between the two countries hovers around 2.5 billion dollars which does not commensurate with their economic potential”, he remarked.

SPEECH BY AMBASSADOR INA LEPEL

Earlier , Ambassador Ina Lepel , in her opening speech, said “Today we can look back to more than a quarter century of a united Germany, which has grown together successfully through democracy, freedom, and respect for the dignity and rights of every individual.  This alone is a good reason to celebrate, but we have decided to give this year’s reception a thematic focus as well, that is “Renewable Energies”. This meshes well with the Climate Diplomacy Week the European Union Missions celebrated with a bicycle event last Sunday, and also with the exhibition on Germany’s transition to green energy we had last week.

Renewable energies can help us achieve the ambitious goals set out in the Paris Climate Agreement. They can provide access to affordable electricity to a growing number of people. And they present a huge potential for the future in terms of jobs and economic opportunities. Renewable energies also play an important role in our bilateral development cooperation as well as in our commercial relations.

We could observe that just last week, when the State Secretary of the German Federal Foreign Office, Stephan Steinlein, brought a business delegation to Pakistan, in which this sector was particularly well represented.  In order to showcase the potential of this sector, we have some specialized stalls over there which I recommend to your attention. As usual, some of our German institutions are also represented with their stalls. And I hope you have all noticed the BMW placed near the entrance by this year’s sponsor of our event, BMW, whom I would like to thank for their support.

German-Pakistan relations are developing well in other areas as well: Trade between Pakistan and Germany is on an upward trend.  The German and Pakistani business communities are growing more closely together. The establishment of the German Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry in May this year is just one visible sign of this trend. - And I am very pleased to see the growing interest from young Pakistanis in higher studies in Germany and in learning the German language. - In the last twelve months we have seen a lively exchange of high-level visits, the most prominent being the visit of the honorable Speaker of the National Assembly to Germany in July. This shows that our Parliament to Parliament relations are flourishing as well.

Activities like these can help building bridges between people of different cultures and nations. Such bridges are important in times when intolerance to diversity seems to be growing in many societies. Building bridges rather than giving way to fear and resignation is also in the spirit of a verse by Pakistan’s national poet and philosopher Dr. Muhammad Iqbal,

 (mein Iqbal ka pegham Urdu mein dungi): - Amal se zindagi banti hay, jannat bhi, jahunnam bi, yeh xaki apni fitrat mein na noori hay, na nari hay. It means “Life is either hell or heaven, depending on our deeds, - By himself this earthly man is nor an angel nor a beast.”

So let me conclude by saying: Germany will continue to be strongly committed to our bilateral relations for the good of the Pakistani and the German people.

Messages from Federal President Gauck and Foreign Mininster Steinmeier on occasion of Day of German Unity can be seen on following link

http://www.pakistan.diplo.de/Vertretung/pakistan/en/00/TdE.html