TASHKENT, Uzbekistan: Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif arrived here Tuesday on a two-day official visit to Republic of Uzbekistan to strengthen bilateral ties and discuss with its leadership the regional situation.
The Prime Minister was accorded a red carpet welcome as he along with spouse Begum Kulsoom Nawaz alighted from his aircraft at Tashkent International Airport.
He was received by Prime Minister of Uzbkistan Shavkat Mirziyayev and Foreign Minister Abdul Aziz Kamilov. Clad in traditional dresses, two children presented him bouquets and Honor Guards presented him salute.
The Prime Minister Sharif is accompanied by a high level delegation comprising his Special Assistant on Foreign Affairs Tariq Fatemi, Advisor on National Security retired Lt. Gen Nasser Khan Janjua and Special Assistant on Aviation Shujaat Azim.
The flags of Pakistan and Uzbekistan fluttered atop the airport building as well as throughout the route where Prime Minister’s motorcade heading towards Kuksaroy, the official residence of Uzbek President.
The Prime Minister’s visit is part of the regular high-level exchanges between the two brotherly countries, the Foreign Office said. The two countries share similar views on major regional and international issues and collaborate closely in multilateral forums including the UN, OIC, ECO, and SCO.
The visit is reflective of Prime Minister’s high priority and broader commitment to further deepen Pakistan’s engagement with Central Asia.
It would provide an important opportunity to strengthen and consolidate cooperation in the fields of energy, trade, regional connectivity, culture, tourism and people-to-people contacts, while also exploring new areas of collaboration.
During his stay, Nawaz Sharif would meet Uzbek President Islam Karimov and discuss regional situation and ways to increase bilateral cooperation in multiple spheres.
The two leaders would also review the evolving regional peace and security scenario and discuss ways in which the two countries could work together and better coordinate to confront terrorist threats in the region.
Strategically located Uzbek Republic borders with with Kazakhstan to the north, in the east and south-east with Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, in the west with Turkmenistan and in the south with Afghanistan, making the country unique sharing borders with rest four Central Asian states.
With a population of around 30 million, Uzbekistan’s GDP growth rates stands at 8.1 percent. The country’s economy is mainly based on commodities including energy products, cotton, gold, mineral fertilizers, natural gas, petroleum, coal, gold, uranium, silver, textiles, foodstuffs, machinery and automobiles.