PAKISTAN KYRGYZSTAN WILL TRANSFORM TIES INTO STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP

Founder Editor Tazeen Akhtar..

BISHKEK - Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday said Pakistan and Kyrgyzstan must ensure that special bilateral ties were transformed into a strategic partnership encompassing all areas of bilateral relations.

In a meeting with Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambaev here, Nawaz said relations between Pakistan and Kyrgyzstan continued to move from strength-to-strength. He said Pakistan was eager to see a prosperous Central Asia with all countries connected by rail, road and air links.

Prime Minister Sharif said the existing trade volume was not equivalent to the actual potential which existed, and both the countries should work to increase it. He also appreciated the Kyrgyz president's leadership under which the country had seen remarkable development since its independence.

Earlier, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his Kyrgyz counterpart Sariyev Temir - during talks in Bishkek - agreed to further augment cooperation in diverse fields including economy, trade and energy. The two leaders also agreed to enhance political exchanges and people-to-people contact.

The prime minister appreciated the political maturity which the people of Kyrgyzstan have shown in developing their democratic culture and norms. He said Pakistan and Kyrgyzstan had common history, culture, faith and desire for peaceful, stable and prosperous region. The two leaders also discussed ways and means to enhance cooperation in different fields, including economy, trade and energy.

Addressing a joint press conference, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said Pakistan enjoyed excellent bilateral relations with Kyrgyzstan. “The relations are deep rooted in shared values and common faith,” he added.

He said Pakistan wished to deepen relations with the Central Asian state, adding that political exchanges, particularly high level visits, would help further cement the bilateral relations.

Nawaz Sharif said both the countries had shared interests for peace and stability in the region. “The two countries share commonality of views on regional and international issues,” he added. The prime minister expressed the confidence that the agreements signed on Thursday would further bolster relations between the two countries.

In his remarks, Kyrgyz Prime Minister Sariyev Temir said the two countries enjoyed common history, culture and faith. He said there was desire on the both sides to further strengthen relations in different sectors.

The Kyrgyz Prime Minister said his government was committed to further strengthening and expanding cooperation and collaboration with Pakistan on high-priority areas.

“Active development of the Pakistani sea ports - "Gwadar" and "Karachi" - will provide us a unique opportunity to become a bridge between North and South by joining the regional transport corridors with an access to the open sea through Pakistan,” he added.

Kyrgyz Prime Minister Sariyev Temir said the project to export electricity from Central Asia to South Asia (CASA-1,000) was also discussed during the meeting. He said an early launch of the CASA-1,000 had a special importance for regional cooperation.

He said there was good cooperation between Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan in the field of regional security. “We have discussed with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif the issues of interaction between our governments to address threats to the spread of religious radicalism, international terrorism, and drug trafficking,” he added.

Agreements

Pakistan and Kyrgyzstan signed two agreements in Bishkek on Thursday. The agreements related to cooperation in disaster management and anti-narcotics. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his Kyrgyz counterpart Sariyev Temir witnessed the signing ceremony.

Earlier, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif arrived in Bishkek on an official visit to Kyrgyzstan after concluding a two-day visit to Turkmenistan. The Kyrgyz prime minister along with his cabinet members received Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on the latter’s arrival.

In the formal welcome ceremony at the airport, Prime Minister Sharif was given guard of honour. National anthems of the two countries were played on the occasion.

Federal ministers Khurram Dastgir and Khawaja Asif, Minister of State Jam Kamal, Special Assistant to Prime Minister Tariq Fatmi and Political Secretary to Prime Minister Asif Kirmani accompanied the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.