ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: Pakistan and Bahrain on Monday agreed on early activation of the Joint Business Council with a view to explore new avenues of cooperation in diverse fields.
In a joint press conference along with his Bahraini Counterpart Shaikh Khalid Bin Ahmad Al Khalifa following a round of consultations as part of Pakistan-Bahrain Joint Ministerial Commission (CMC), the Adviser to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz said that the two countries agreed to expand cooperation in energy, defence, agriculture and higher education.
Sartaj Aziz said that the two sides also agreed for early activation of Joint Business Council between federations of commerce of the two countries.
The adviser said that Pakistan had become more attractive for investment due to visible improvement in security situation. He said that Pakistan was committed to protect and facilitate foreign investment by offering equal opportunities both to local and foreign investors.
The adviser said that China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) would open new avenues of enhanced trade and economic activities in Pakistan. He said that special economic zones were to be established on the routes of the Corridor and this would offer attractive incentives and facilities both to domestic and foreign investors.
Sartaj Aziz said that the CPEC would also benefit the region and Bahrain and other Gulf countries would find innumerable opportunities to exploit for their good. He invited the Bahraini investors to invest in the CPEC and said there was a wide scope of expanding cooperation in many areas.
Moreover, he said that during consultations, the two sides also discussed cooperation in counter terrorism and ways to protect the region from violence. He said that terrorism was a global menace and collective efforts were needed to eliminate it fully from the face of the earth. He said that Pakistan was ready to cooperate with Bahrain in extending its experience in counterterrorism.
Sartaj Aziz expressed confidence that the ties between Pakistan and Bahrain were robust and the both were expanding ties in defence, economic and political consultations. He expressed appreciation of the government of Pakistan over the gift of a university by the government of Bahrain.
The Bahraini foreign minister said that the two sides signed two Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) today on cooperation in agriculture and diplomatic service training. He said that a number of other MoUs were also in the pipeline.
The foreign minister said that there should have been frequent interaction between Pakistan and Bahrain to forge collaboration in different fields. He said that the two sides had good cooperation in defence, economy and political consultations.
Shaikh Khalid said that besides discussing further mutual collaboration, they also discussed Pakistan-Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) cooperation.
To a question, the Bahraini foreign minister said that lasting peace in the region was not possible without the resolution of Kashmir dispute. He said that Bahrain would be happy to extend every possible cooperation in amicable resolution of this longstanding issue.
Earlier, the two sides discussed the whole gamut of their bilateral relations during the inaugural session of Pakistan-Bahrain Joint Ministerial Commission.