Pakistan hoping for expeditious implementation of Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012 10:00:10 by

ISLAMABAD: President Asif Ali Zardari said on Tuesday that Pakistan was committed to the early implementation of the Iran-Pakistan Gas Pipeline Project in order to meet the ever growing energy needs of the country.

Zardari, during his meeting with the visiting Iranian Vice President for International Affairs Ali Seedlou at the Aiwan-e-Sadr, said that the Pakistan government was pursuing a trade liberalisation policy across the border. He said that that the elimination of tariff and non tariff barriers between the Pakistan and Iran had been proposed to further boost trade ties to realise the true business and trade potential.

For his part, Seedlou responded to calls for the expeditious implementation of the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline, by saying that Iran had already laid gas pipeline on its side of border and was ready for the realisation of the project.

The President said the recent agreement between the two countries to work towards expanding Pakistan-Iran Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) to include additional items from both sides and making it an agenda item for the next meeting of the trade committee was a welcome move to enhance trade links between the two countries.

He said that enhancing bilateral cooperation particularly in energy, security, communication and infrastructure would help the two countries to overcome the challenges in the way of realisation of full existing potential of their equation and to realise the goal of raising the bilateral trade to $ 5 billion, which, the President said, was doable.

Those who were present during the meeting included Federal Minister for Commerce Makhdoom Amin Fahim, Advisor to Prime Minister on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Minister for Interior Senator Rehman Malik, Senator Babar Awan, Secretary General to the President M. Salman Faruqui, federal secretaries Foreign Affairs, Petroleum and Economic Affairs division and other senior officials.

He said resource constraints can be overcome by joining hands and enhancing cooperation in all the areas particularly trade, energy, horticulture, livestock, communication, infrastructure development and engineering sector.

Regarding cooperation in the banking Sector, the President said that the establishment of a Joint Working Group and the proposed visit of a delegation of Iranian bankers to meet their Pakistani counterparts would give an impetus to the cooperation in the banking sector besides facilitating bilateral trade.

Zardari said that facilitating export of meat and Kinno from Pakistan would help the two countries enhance mutual trade. He said that opening of a new border crossing at Gabd-Reemdan will connect southern parts of Balochistan and Karachi with Chah Bahar and Bandar Abbas through the Coastal Highway.

He said Pakistan was ready to grant multiple entry visas to the businessmen from Iran on reciprocal basis.

Pakistan also wanted to carry forward the proposed projects of 1000 MW Taftan-Quetta Power Transmission line and the 100 MW Gwadar power supply.

Iran and Pakistan need to tackle extremism collectively

Extremism and militancy needed to be tackled collectively, the President remarked.

He said it was high time that the regional countries work together and extricate people from the threat posed by extremists and militant mindset.

The President thanked the Iranian government for pledging 0 million assistance for the rehabilitation of flood affectees in Pakistan.

He said, “We look forward to welcome President Ahmadinejad for the third Pakistan-Iran-Afghanistan Trilateral Summit” and expressed the hope that the forthcoming Summit would prove to be an important milestone towards their journey toward finding peace, stability and Afghan-led conciliation process.

Quetta News Sources -2

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