PM, UAE Prince hold talks to enhance bilateral ties

Umbreen Turk

ISLAMABAD: Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, met with Prime Minister Imran Khan today. The Crown Prince was accompanied by a highlevel delegation comprising cabinet members and senior officials. In a special gesture, the Crown Prince was received by Prime Minister Imran Khan at the Nur Khan Airbase. Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed had earlier visited Pakistan in January 2019. Prime Minister Imran Khan and HH Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed held wide-ranging talks focusing on bilateral, regional and international issues. The discussions continued over the luncheon, hosted by the Prime Minister in honour of the Crown Prince and his accompanying entourage. The Prime Minister expressed satisfaction at the frequent exchange of highlevel visits between Pakistan and the UAE and the steady development of cordial ties between the two fraternal countries. Underlining the strategic importance of the Pakistan-UAE special relationship, the Prime Minister stressed the imperative of deeper economic engagement. The Prime Minister highlighted the economic turn-around in Pakistan and the growing opportunities for foreign investment as well as fruitful trade and commercial engagement with key partner countries. Welcoming the UAE’s interest in investing in myriad sectors in Pakistan, the Prime Minister assured maximum facilitation for UAE investments. Among others, the possibilities in the energy and tourism sectors were highlighted. Closer collaboration in the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) sector was also underlined. The Prime Minister highlighted the positive contributions of more than 1.6 million expatriate Pakistani community, which considers UAE as their second home. Prime Minister Imran Khan also thanked the UAE leadership and its people for their commitment to Pakistan’s socio-economic development, focused in particular on health, education and youth. The Prime Minister apprised Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed of India’s inhuman lockdown in the Indian Occupied J&K, continuing for over 150 days. He also highlighted India’s discriminatory Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and their negative consequences. The Prime Minister underscored the need for the world community to take urgent steps to address India’s state oppression in IOJ&K, immediate removal of the continuing lockdown and other restrictions, avoidance of escalation of tensions on the LoC, and peaceful resolution of the Jammu & Kashmir dispute in accordance with the UN Security Council resolutions. The OIC’s role in the advancement of the Islamic Ummah’s causes was discussed. The Prime Minister also apprised the Crown Prince of Pakistan’s efforts and positive contribution to the Afghan peace and reconciliation process. The Prime Minister underlined that a peaceful, stable and prosperous Afghanistan was in the interest of Pakistan and the region. The Crown Prince underlined the strategic importance of UAE- Pakistan relations and extended cordial greetings for the brotherly people of Pakistan and good wishes for their accelerated development in the year 2020 and beyond. He also underlined UAE’s support for peace and stability in South Asia and peaceful resolution of issues. The Crown Prince also appreciated Pakistan’s important role in the OIC. The visit of the Crown Prince was the first by a foreign dignitary to Pakistan in 2020, and reflective of the special relations between Pakistan and UAE, which continue to grow deeper with the passage of time. The two leaders reaffirmed their resolve to take these relations to a new level. Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan Thursday arrived here on daylong visit to meet the leadership and discuss the bilateral and regional matters. As the foreign dignitary landed from his special aircraft at Nur Khan Airbase, Prime Minister Imran Khan received him warmly along with his cabinet members. Traditionally attired two children presented bouquet to the foreign guest who is the first foreign dignitary to visit Pakistan in the new year. The crown prince was accompanied by a high-level delegation who is here on his second visit as he had last visited the country in January last year. The crown prince would have a one-onone meeting with the prime minister who would also host a luncheon for the guest. During the meeting, the leadership would exchange views covering bilateral matters and regional and international issues of common interest. According to Foreign Office, the frequent exchange of high-level visits between Pakistan and the UAE was reflective of the importance that the two countries attached to their fraternal ties. The crown prince’s visit would contribute to further enhancement of multi-faceted collaboration between Pakistan and the UAE. The UAE is Pakistan’s largest trading partner in the Middle East and a major source of investments. The UAE is also among Pakistan’s prime development partners in education, health and energy sectors. It hosts more than 1.6 million expatriate Pakistani community, which contributes remittances of around $4.5 billion annually to the GDP.