FM mulls trade, defense ties with Romanian PM

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By Our Diplomatic Correspondent

BUCHAREST: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi Monday met Prime Minister of Romania Nicolae Ciucă wherein they discussed the bilateral matters, the situation in Afghanistan, and the human rights abuses in the IIOJK.

On his arrival at the PM Office, Foreign Minister Qureshi was received by the Romanian Chief of Protocol.

The foreign minister conveyed good wishes from Prime Minister Imran Khan and highlighted the historic and cordial ties between the two countries.

He told the Romanian PM that Pakistan desired to establish broad-based and result-oriented ties with his country and the current improvement of the bilateral relations manifested the vision of the two leaderships.

The foreign minister lauded the anti-COVID measures by Romania and thanked the Romanian PM for a donation of 500,000 doses of anti-COVID vaccines to Pakistan by his government.

Prime Minister Nicolae Ciucă appreciated the role of Pakistan in the context of Afghanistan particularly for the evacuation of the Romanian citizens.

Discussing the regional and international matters, the foreign minister particularly highlighted the Indian human rights abuses in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir and the situation in Afghanistan.

He also appreciated Romania’s role to support Pakistan in obtaining the GSP Plus facility.

Earlier, Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs Shah Mahmood Qureshi Sunday said the strategic partnership between Pakistan and the European Union had entered the next level and Pakistan was desirous of enhancing ties with the countries in Europe.

He was speaking at a dinner hosted by him here in honour of members of the European Parliament and Parliament of Romania.

Pakistan’s ambassador to Romania Dr Zafar Iqbal accompanied the minister.

Qureshi said Pakistan – an emerging market of more than 200 million people provided immense opportunities for investment.

He said Pakistan was determined to expand economic and trade ties with all member countries of the European Union including Romania.

Members of Parliament of Romania and the European Parliament welcomed the minister and expressed their desire to promote economic relations with Pakistan.

Later while speaking to the Pakistani community in Romania, the foreign minister said overseas Pakistanis had been given voting rights. Now they would have the opportunity to influence policymaking in Pakistan, he added.

He said he would talk to the Romanian Foreign Minister about giving more facilities to Pakistanis living in Romania.

He said one section of Pakistanis was sending its hard-earned money to Pakistan while another one was looting and taking money away from the country.

He said Pakistan would focus on increasing exports to the markets in Europe.

He said overseas Pakistanis had opened 300,000 digital accounts and sent $ three billion through them in a short time.

The Pakistani diaspora was given facilities so that it could buy houses and cars in Pakistan, he told.

Qureshi said expatriates sent $ 30 billion to Pakistan, adding Pakistani investors could now repatriate their profits earned in Pakistan and were also given exemptions in taxes and duties.

He said there were immense opportunities to expand ties between Pakistan and Romania.