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1- ECNEC APPROVES NEW PROJECTS
2- GERMAN VICE CHANCELLOR IN PAKISTAN
3- SUPPLY OF POTABLE WATER
4- COTTON LEAF CURL VIRUS

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GERMAN VICE CHANCELLOR IN PAKISTAN

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Soon a delegation of German businessmen and investors will visit Pakistan

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From SHAMIM AHMED RIZVI,
 Islamabad

Aug 02 - 08, 2004
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Pakistan and Germany have reiterated their commitment to further enhance their existing friendly and close relation in all spheres particularly in the field of trade and economy. This was stated by the German Vice Chancellor and Foreign Minister, Mr. Josethka Fisher and Pakistan Foreign Minister Khurshid Mehmood Kasuri while addressing a joint press conference in Islamabad on the conclusion of 3-day visits of German delegation to Pakistan.

Appreciating Pakistan's economic reform agenda and the overall improvement in Pakistan's economy, Mr. Fisher disclosed that soon a delegation of German businessmen and investors will visit Pakistan to find new avenues for boosting trade and economic cooperation between the 2 countries. Possibilities of investment through joint ventures will also be examined in detail, he added. The Foreign Minister also called on the President, General Pervez Musharraf, the Prime Minister, Ch. Shaujaat Hussain and the Finance Minister Shaukat Aziz.

The German Foreign Minister said, he had very friendly and open talks with the Pakistani leaders on all bilateral, regional and international issues. He said, Germany enjoys very friendly and long term relations with Pakistan and intends to work for further deepening and improvement of these ties. He appreciated Pakistan's role in war against terrorism.

He said, Germany appreciates Pak-India dialogue process and fully supports Lahore and Islamabad process to restore peace and stability in the region. He said, the resolution of all disputes including Jammu and Kashmir between India and Pakistan will pave way a long-term peace and stability not only in the region but also in the world. He expressed the hope that Pak-India dialogue will not only continue in future but will be further expedited and Germany fully supports this process.

To a question, he said Germany gives special importance to its trade and economic relations with Pakistan and fully favours reduction in tariff barriers in the EU to increase trade with Pakistan. He said, a German businessman delegation will shortly visit Pakistan to further boost bilateral trade relations. To a question, the German Foreign Minister said Germany has always raised vice against human rights violations everywhere in the world and he also raised the issue of human rights abuse in the Indian held Kashmir with the India leadership during his recent visit to New Delhi.

 

 

Speaking on the occasion, the Pakistan Foreign Minister, Mr. Khurshid Mehmood Kasuri expressed the confidence that the visit of German Vice Chancellor will give new impetus to Pak-German relations in all fields particularly in trade and economy. He said, we discussed at length all matters of bilateral interest and regional and international issues in a very friendly atmosphere. He said, Pak-German relations will continue to further grow with the passage of time. He said, he has held fruitful talks with the German counterpart on terrorism, Afghanistan trade relations and other important issues including Pak-India dialogue and SAARC. The Foreign Minister said Pakistan has vital interest in Afghanistan and intends a stable government which can make the country prosperous and progressive. He said, Pakistan is already playing important role in the reconstruction of Afghanistan and has provided one hundred million dollars in this regard. He said Pakistan enjoys cordial relations with Afghanistan and making sincere efforts at all levels to further improve these ties.

Welcoming the German Foreign Minister, the President said Pakistan wishes to strengthen Pak-German cooperation in diverse fields. He expressed the hope that the German Foreign Minister's visit would be fruitful and productive.

German Foreign Minister also called on Prime Minister Shaujaat Hussain and discussed bilateral and trade relations between two countries. The Prime Minister briefed the German Foreign Minister about regional situation and Pakistan's role in the region.

While briefing Mr. Fisher on the state of Pakistan's economy the Prime Minister said their was a great potential for investment in different sectors in the country. The government, he said has created enabling environment for investment and a number of incentives and concession are being provided to foreign investors. With the opening of Gwadar Port the Central Asian market will be available to the manufacturers who would have enterprise in Pakistan.

Finance Minister, Shaukat Aziz while talking to a delegation of German parliamentarians and businessmen said the economic reforms introduced by the government, incentives offered for investment, transparency and openness in government's policies, improving infrastructure, availability of human capital coupled with continuity and consistency of policies and political stability achieved but Pakistan has made it an attractive place for investment. Pakistan has witnessed an enhanced level of foreign direct inflows of around $ 1 billion last year.

 

 

The Minister briefed the delegation about the economic reforms and fiscal policies introduced by the government which resulted in a turn around of the economy, enable Pakistan to get out of the debt trade and improved its macro economic indicators. From a point where we did not have the money to pay out one billion Pakistan, today has foreign exchange reserves of US $ 12.5 billion, said the Minister. Elaborating government policy to act as facilitator and enabler to drive the private sector a investment potential in Pakistan, Shaukat Aziz said government be provided a level playing field too. He particularly mentioned availability of human capital, cheap and skilled labour, abundance of national resources, tax and banking forms, a world class infrastructure etc.