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Prime Minister Imran Khan leaves for Tajikistan to attend SCO Summit

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ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: Prime Minister Imran Khan left for Tajikistan on Thursday on a two-day official visit at the invitation of President of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon.

The prime minister was accompanied by a high-level ministerial delegation.

This is the third visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to Central Asia, underlining Pakistan’s enhanced engagement with the region.

Prime Minister Imran Khan will participate in the 20th Shanghai Cooperation Organization Council of Heads of State (SCO-CHS) Summit in Dushanbe. He has earlier participated in SCO-CHS held in Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic on June 13-14, 2019, and SCO-CHS hosted by Russia on November 10, 2020 through video conference.

The SCO is an eight-member permanent inter-governmental trans-regional Organization. It was established in Shanghai on June 15, 2001. Pakistan became an SCO Observer in 2005 and a full member in June 2017 during Astana SCO-CHS Summit. Russia, China, India, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, and Tajikistan are other SCO members.

The SCO also has 4 Observer states (Iran, Mongolia, Belarus, and Afghanistan) and 6 Dialogue Partners (Azerbaijan, Armenia, Cambodia, Nepal, Turkey, and Sri Lanka).

Prime Minister Imran Khan will have bilateral meetings with other participating leaders on the sidelines of the 20th SCO Heads of State Summit

After attending the SCO-CHS, the prime minister will have the bilateral segment of the visit.

His talks with Tajik President Emomali Rahmon will cover the entire gamut of bilateral relations, especially enhancing trade, economic, and investment ties with a particular focus on regional connectivity.

The two Countries have earlier expressed a strong commitment to enter into a formal strategic partnership.

The prime minister will also inaugurate the first meeting of the Pakistan-Tajikistan Business Forum for which a group of Pakistani businessmen will also visit Dushanbe.

The Joint Business Forum will catalyze growing trade and investment relations and promote business-to-business contacts between the trading communities of both sides. A meeting of the Pakistan-Tajikistan Joint Business Council will also be held on the sidelines.

Pakistan and Tajikistan enjoy close brotherly relations underpinned by the bonds of common faith, history, and culture. The two Countries have shared perceptions and a common desire to promote economic development, peace, security, and stability in the region.

Prime Minister Imran Khan’s visit is part of Pakistan’s deepened engagement with Central Asia through ‘Vision Central Asia’ policy, having revitalized focus in five key areas of political ties, trade and investment, energy and connectivity, security and defense, and people-to-people contacts.

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