ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: President Dr. Arif Alvi has underlined the need to bring a substantial increase to the quantum of bilateral trade between Pakistan and Ireland to realize the full potential of bilateral trade, adding that the current level of investment by Ireland in Pakistan should be further enhanced by inviting Irish companies to invest in Pakistan and benefit from its lucrative foreign investment regime.
The president expressed these views while talking to Pakistan’s Ambassador-designate to Ireland Ms Aisha Farooqui who called on him at Aiwan-e-Sadr in Islamabad on Monday.
Talking to the ambassador-designate, the president said that there were immense opportunities for the IT-skilled youth and start-ups to secure online jobs in Ireland as more and more IT companies in Europe were shifting their headquarters to Ireland, which had been termed the “Silicon Valley of Europe”.
President Arif Alvi expressed the hope that the ambassador-designate to Ireland would work towards further deepening Pakistan’s fruitful partnership with Ireland and expanding the mutually beneficial cooperation by taking meaningful steps which may include an increasing level of bilateral engagements, catalyzing the flow of investment to Pakistan, creating online job opportunity for the IT skilled youth of Pakistan, increasing parliamentary exchanges, cementing people to people to contacts, and seeking better cooperation in agriculture and livestock.
The president said that Pakistan should focus on becoming an active partner in Quantum Computing research programs as quantum computers may take a few minutes or hours to solve complex scientific problems which supercomputers of today may take years to solve.
The president termed the support of Ireland for Pakistan very important during the ongoing Fourth Biennial Review of GSP Plus and launching of the new GSP Scheme post-2023 which, he said, would require active engagements. He also termed the opening of the resident Embassy in Islamabad in October this year by the Irish government as a welcoming step and said that it would help in taking the mutually beneficial and friendly relations between the two countries to the next level.
Dr. Arif Alvi said that there was over 25,000 strong Pakistani diaspora in Ireland, which included Pakistani students and professionals, adding that higher education was an important area of bilateral cooperation and advised the Ambassador-designate to make efforts to enhance cooperation in technical education and Irish scholarships for Pakistani students to study in the Irish universities.
The president also asked the Ambassador-designate to highlight the human rights violations being committed by the Indian Occupation Forces in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK). He added that Jammu and Kashmir was an international dispute, and should be resolved as per the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council and in line with the aspirations of the Kashmiri people.
The president added that there was a need to sensitize the international community, particularly the United Nations and its human rights machinery, to take cognizance of the rapidly deteriorating situation of Islamophobia in India and hold India accountable for its failure in ensuring the security and well-being of its Muslim citizens.