Pakistan, Saudi Arabia on path to strategic partnership: minister

Pakistan, Saudi Arabia on path to strategic partnership: minister

Pakistan, Saudi Arabia on path to strategic partnership ministerISLAMABAD: Pakistan and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia have affirmed their stance to consolidate security and stability, fight against violence, extremism and terrorism, support the unity and independence of the countries of the region and their territorial integrity, as well as to give priority to political solutions that bring prosperity and progress to the region and its people.

A joint statement issued from Jeddah on the conclusion of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s three-day visit to KSA said, “The two sides agreed to continue exchanging support and coordination in international organizations and forums, and stressed the importance of all countries’ commitment to the United Nations Charter and the principles of international law, adherence to the principles of good neighborliness, respect for the unity and sovereignty of states, non-interference in internal affairs, and striving to resolve disputes by peaceful means.”

In the joint statement, the two countries expressed complete unanimity of views on issues like Kashmir, Yemen, Syria, Palestine and Al-Quds. It said the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) welcomed the statements of Pakistan mentioning keenness to find a settlement to all disputes with India, including the Jammu and Kashmir dispute. “The two sides stressed the importance of dialogue between Pakistan and India in order to resolve the issues between the two countries, especially the Jammu and Kashmir dispute, to ensure peace and stability in the region,” it added.

The two sides discussed the latest developments in Afghanistan, and agreed on the need to achieve security and stability, and to prevent the use of Afghan land as a shelter for terrorist groups. The two sides also agreed on the importance of following up and implementing the outcomes of the extraordinary meeting of Council of Foreign Ministers (CFNM) of the OIC on Afghanistan, aimed at supporting stability and providing humanitarian support to the Afghan people.

They also stressed the importance of respecting the rights guaranteed by the tolerant Islamic Sharia, in order to achieve security and peace for Afghanistan, and the continuation of concerted international efforts to provide aid to the Afghan people. They expressed their hope that the Russian and Ukrainian sides would reach a political solution that would end the crisis, achieve security and stability, and limit negative repercussions at regional and international levels.

They reiterated their support for the efforts made by the Coalition to Support Legitimacy in Yemen, the initiatives aimed at reaching a comprehensive political solution to the Yemeni crisis in accordance with the Security Council Resolution 2216, Gulf Initiative and its executive mechanisms, and the outcomes of the National Dialogue Conference. The two sides renewed their condemnation of the Houthi terrorist threat to the stability and security of the Kingdom by launching ballistic missiles against vital installations and civilian objects, and expressed their deep concern about the threat to the security of oil exports and the stability of energy supplies to the world.

The two sides welcomed the decision of the former Yemeni president, issued in accordance with the Yemeni Constitution and the Gulf initiative and its executive mechanisms, to establish the Presidential Leadership Council in order to complete the implementation of the tasks of the transitional period, transfer power to the Presidential Leadership Council, and delegate the Council with the full powers of the President of the Republic.

The two sides affirmed their full support for the Presidential Leadership Council and its supporting entities to enable it to exercise its duties in implementing effective policies and initiatives that would achieve security and stability in the Republic of Yemen. The two sides stressed the need for the international community to take measures to ensure the Houthis’ involvement in political consultations under the supervision of the United Nations to reach a final and comprehensive political solution.

They discussed the developments of the Palestinian cause, and stressed the importance of preserving the status and the Islamic character of Al-Quds Al-Sharif in the Arab and Islamic nations, and achieving comprehensive and just peace in accordance with the relevant resolutions of international legitimacy and the Arab Peace Initiative, which guarantees the right of the Palestinian people to establish their independent state on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital.

On the Syrian issue, the two sides stressed the importance of reaching a solution to the Syrian crisis that would achieve the aspirations of the Syrian people and preserve Syria’s unity and territorial integrity. They stressed the need to limit regional interference in the Syrian affairs that threatens the security and stability of Syria, its territorial integrity and the cohesion of its social fabric, and the need to support the efforts of the UN Special Envoy for Syria. They also stressed the importance of supporting Iraq’s stability and territorial integrity.

The statement said that Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince and Deputy Prime Minister, received the Pakistani Prime Minister in Jeddah. An official meeting was held between both sides, during which they reviewed the historical relations between the two countries and the close cooperation in various fields, as well as discussed ways to strengthen relations in all areas. In the bilateral context, the two sides stressed the importance of strengthening work through the Saudi-Pakistani Supreme Coordination Council, diversifying trade exchange between the two brotherly countries and intensifying communication between the private sector in the two countries in order to discuss trade and investment opportunities and turn them into tangible partnerships.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia affirmed its continuous support to Pakistan and its economy including the discussion of augmenting the $3 billion deposit with the central bank through term extension or otherwise, and exploring options to further enhance the financing of petroleum products and supporting the economic structural reforms for the benefit of Pakistan and its people. Pakistan greatly appreciates the continued strong support of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to Pakistan.

They agreed to deepen the investment cooperation between the two countries, stimulate partnerships and enable investment integration opportunities between the private sector of the two countries. They also agreed to join efforts to develop the investment environment in the two countries and support a number of investment sectors of common interest.

They stressed the importance of strengthening and developing cooperation in the industrial and mining sectors to serve their strategic interests in accordance with the vision of the leaderships of the two countries which aims at further enhancing the cooperation between both countries. The two countries expressed their intention to hold investment forums in order to introduce the available opportunities to the business sectors of both sides, urge them to establish partnerships in various investment fields, and work jointly to solve the challenges faced by the investors through holding meetings of the Saudi-Pakistani Business Council.

They welcomed the entry of the private sector of both countries into investment partnerships in the agricultural and food industries fields. The two sides stressed the importance of cooperation between the two countries in respect of the opportunities available through the economic transformation programs under the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 and benefitting from the distinguished Pakistani expertise and capabilities in a number of sectors in order to achieve mutual benefit of the two countries’ economies.

They also agreed to enhance media cooperation, explore opportunities to develop cooperation in the fields of radio, television and news agencies, and exchange experiences in order to develop the joint media work. In the field of environment, the Pakistani side valued the Kingdom’s efforts and initiatives in the field of climate change, addressing environmental challenges and improving the quality of life. They agreed to continue cooperation in the field. The Islamic Republic of Pakistan also welcomed the Kingdom’s launch of the “Saudi Green” and “Middle East Green” initiatives, and expressed its support for the Kingdom’s efforts in the field of climate change through the implementation of the circular carbon economy approach, which was launched by the Kingdom and approved by the G20 leaders.

The two countries expressed their aspiration to implement the two initiatives. In the same context, the two sides stressed the importance of adhering to the principles of the Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Paris Agreement, and the need to develop climate agreements by focusing on emissions without sources. In the field of energy, the Pakistani side welcomed the Kingdom’s decision to extend the agreement to finance exports of crude oil products and oil derivatives.

They agreed to explore ways of joint cooperation in a number of fields, including innovative uses of hydrocarbons, electricity, clean technologies for hydrocarbon resources, energy efficiency, localization of the energy sector products and supplying the chains associated with it, working on the renewable energy projects and developing such projects through various sources such as solar and wind energy, in addition to considering partnership opportunities in these sectors. In the political context, the two sides exchanged views on issues of mutual concern in the regional and international levels, and agreed on the importance to continue coordinating their positions in a way that serves their interests

At the end of the visit, the Pakistani Prime Minister expressed his profound gratitude to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, and Prince Muhammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud as well as the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the generous hospitality extended to him and his delegation.

Prince Mohammed bin Salman expressed his best wishes for good health and happiness for the Prime Minister of Pakistan, and further prosperity and progress for the brotherly people of Pakistan.

Meanwhile, Minister of Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb said former Prime Minister Imran Kahn roamed the world with his begging bowl for four years, but it was Shehbaz Sharif under whom Pakistan was now setting on a path of strategic partnership with KSA after the visit.

Addressing a press conference, she said that besides a $3 billion augmentation in accounts, Finance Minister Miftah Ismail was still in Saudi Arabia, working on fuel procurement negotiations, industrial zones, Pakistani diaspora rights, cultural and economic avenues. “Pakistan will once again embark on a journey towards progress and development. It would pursue mutually beneficial cooperation with foreign countries on the principle of respect and equality and now Pakistan would talk on the rights of the Kashmiris instead of trading it off to Kashmir, like Imran,” she remarked.

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