Priorities for enhancing trade-economic cooperation identified
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President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev and Prime Minister of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan Imran Khan continued talks in an expanded format with the participation of official delegations of the two countries.
Issues of developing multifaceted cooperation, primarily in the political, trade, economic, investment, transport, logistics, tourism and humanitarian spheres, were considered.
“The peoples of Uzbekistan and Pakistan located on the ancient Great Silk Road have been linked by a common history, similar languages and a rich spiritual heritage since ancient times. Today we are reviving these traditions. We are glad that our interstate relations have risen to the level of strategic partnership”, Shavkat Mirziyoyev said.
A stable dynamics of the development of interaction was noted despite the pandemic. In particular, in 2021, the volume of bilateral trade increased by 50 percent. This is more than in previous years, but still does not match the existing potential between the two countries.
The President of Uzbekistan noted that in the near future we have the opportunity to increase the trade turnover up to $500 million, and in the future – up to $1 billion.
The need was noted for joint development of a program of industrial cooperation, as well as a comprehensive roadmap to expand the structure of trade turnover.
The second important area is strengthening cooperation between the two countries in multimodal transport, cargo and air transportation. Recently, the Agreement on Transit and Trade entered into force, laying the foundation for regular freight traffic.
The President noted the importance of implementing projects for the development of cooperation in the transport and logistics sector.
“The railway “Termez – Mazar-i-Sharif – Kabul – Peshawar” is our common future. When the construction of this route is completed, we will create the closest, the cheapest and safest corridor connecting Pakistan to Central Asia, and Uzbekistan to the ports of Karachi, Gwadar and Qasim. This railway will completely change the appearance of our regions”, the President of Uzbekistan said.
During the talks, an agreement was reached on the further promotion of this project.
The prospects for the resumption of regular flights were discussed.
Interaction between the regions of the two countries is also developing. In particular, many projects are jointly implemented by the business community of Namangan region and Punjab province. During the talks, the parties agreed to establish similar cooperation between Surkhandarya region and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and other regions.
Another important area is pilgrimage tourism. The President proposed to create a joint group and open representative offices of the ministries of tourism in the two countries for systematic organization of pilgrimages.
Cooperation in science, ecology, higher education, art, cinema and sports were considered.
The co-chairs of the Intergovernmental Commission, the ministers informed about the agreements reached and plans. Shavkat Mirziyoyev and Imran Khan supported their proposals and gave relevant instructions.
“I think that today’s open and fruitful dialogue, the signed documents will open up new prospects for our strategic partnership. Most importantly, we – two brothers – have a complete mutual understanding. Our governments must be in constant contact to achieve the big goals set today”, the President said.
The talks once again confirmed the strong will and desire of the people of the two countries to bring cooperation to a new level.