ISLAMABAD: Russia has expressed willingness to expand cooperation with Pakistan in different sectors including the industrial, agricultural, energy, medicine and railways.
These positive sentiments were expressed by Russian Trade Minister Denis Valentinovich during the sixth meeting of Pakistan-Russia intergovernmental Commission at the Foreign Office in Islamabad on Wednesday.
Later, addressing a joint news conference along with Minister for Economic Affairs Hammad Azhar, the Russian trade minister said Pakistan Steel Mills was established with the cooperation of Russian experts. He said we will extend cooperation to Pakistan to revive the Steel Mills and enhance its productivity.
He expressed interest in building geological capacity of Pakistan apart from building North South Gas Pipeline.
Denis Valentinovich said Russia wanted to cooperate with Pakistan in aircraft manufacturing sector. He said there were immense opportunities for cooperation in the field of agriculture as well.
Speaking on the occasion, Hammad Azhar said Pakistan desired to transform relations with Russia into a strategic partnership.
He said there were tremendous opportunities to enhance cooperation in the fields of trade, business to business relations and people to people contacts.
The minister said Pakistan had been included in the list of top ten countries for Ease of Doing Business.
He said due to the government’s prudent policies, Pakistan had reduced trade and current account deficits and consequently, international organizations were recognizing Pakistan’s economic stability.
Applauding the Russian offer to revive the Pakistan Steel Mills, he said there was huge scope of cooperation between the two countries in energy sector.
He expressed the hope that work on North South Gas pipeline would be started soon. He urged the Russian companies to invest in oil and gas sector of Pakistan.
Hammad Azhar said Pakistan also desired to enhance cooperation in establishing economic zones. He said cooperation between Pakistan and Russia in the field of Science and Technology would be helpful for development of the region.
Both sides resolved to increase volume of bilateral trade from the present levels to its true potential through greater cooperation and enhanced business activities by the private sector of both the countries.
The Russian side invited Pakistan to organize a road show in Moscow to provide an opportunity to the Russian private companies to explore new avenues in Pakistan.
Pakistani side on the other hand invited Russia for their presence in trade expos held in Pakistan.
The Russian side was apprised that Pakistan held the bilateral and economic relations with the Russia in high esteem which was evident by the recent settlement of the long standing “Settlement of mutual Financial Claims” between the two countries.
The 7th session of IGC will be held in Moscow on mutually agreed dates.