Resetting ties: US deputy secretary to arrive in Islamabad this week

Published: April 2, 2012

Nato supply routes, Coalition Support Fund among issues on the agenda.

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and the US are expected to hold crucial talks this week to carve out a new framework under which supplies for the western forces stationed in Afghanistan would pass through the country, officials said.

In an effort to formulate a new agreement, US Deputy Secretary of State Thomas Nides is likely to travel to Islamabad this week.

Nides, who is the deputy secretary of state for management and resources, is due to hold discussions with relevant government officials, including Finance Minister Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, a government official said, requesting anonymity.

The talks would mark the first time the two countries will hold formal negotiations on the issue since Islamabad shut down the vital supply routes in November last year in reaction to the Nato airstrikes that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers.

Islamabad has refused to lift the ban until Washington agrees to pay compensation and additional taxes on Nato supplies. The official added that Washington had shown its willingness to accept Islamabad’s demand of additional fees on Nato goods passing through Pakistan.

The Coalition Support Fund (CSF) is also expected to be discussed during the meeting, said another official. Last week, US Ambassador Cameron Munter met Finance Minister Hafeez Shaikh to finalise the agenda of Nides’ visit. The CSF has been one of the contentious issues between the two countries. The fund was established by the United States in 2001 to support 27 nations, including Pakistan, to partially cover costs they incur during the war against terrorism.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 2nd, 2012.

Reader Comments (11)

  • Apr 2, 2012 - 11:03AM

    Come NATO come.

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  • Anserali Khan
    Apr 2, 2012 - 11:14AM

    Without US aid and grants from International donors,it will not be possible to make Federal Budget for the Year 2012-13.

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  • Apr 2, 2012 - 11:33AM

    Vienna,April 2,2012
    This time Pakistan should avoid thinking the funds are not
    meant for promoting coalition with Haqqani network instead
    meant to support Ambassador Hussain Haqqani interpretation
    of anti- terror campaign.I do not call by the American word “war”.
    In fact the funds are meant for promotio of peace.Protecting
    cricket playing teenagers and against lynching them as
    robbers!
    Taravadu Taranga Trust for Media Monitoring TTTMM India
    –Kulamarva Balakrishna

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  • WhatisThetruth
    Apr 2, 2012 - 12:05PM

    It is interesting how the Pk govt and the army seems to be standing up to the US. If this is real, and that we do have the capability to say no why do we not just say no, and move on. Let the US find a route through somebody else’s country and destabilise somebody else’s country. And if this is real, why has the govt and specially the army waited for 11 years after 9/11 to do this? If this is not real and we do not have a capability then this is just a game to fool the people. Either way, the pk govt and army look pretty stupid.

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  • Abdul Majeed
    Apr 2, 2012 - 12:07PM

    Pakistani nation must learn once for all that their country has never and is not run on foreign aid – all the development economists have the statistics to convince – it is a good example of fact vs propaganda.

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  • Munir Akram
    Apr 2, 2012 - 12:13PM

    @Anserali Khan: Shahid Javed Burki, a former World Bank Vice President is of the view that ‘cutting of civilian aid would have only a 0.14 percent impact on Pakistan’s GDP growth’. “As long as the multilateral aid continues, it won’t impact Pakistan’s economy,” says Sartaj Aziz, a former finance minister. Out of $ 1.5 billion per annum authorisation by Kerry-Lugar-Burman Act, actual disbursements have been $275 million and $676 million during 2009 & 2010 respectively. This includes flood relief donation of $500 million. Therefore, it would be naïve to presume that withholding of US assistance is so significant that it would result into strategic collapse.

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  • Apr 2, 2012 - 12:29PM

    North Atlantic terrorist organization

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  • Apr 2, 2012 - 1:24PM

    Politicians( Ruling and opposition both )are treating this as an opportunity to gain political mileage ( when anti US sentiments is prevailing) but will finally allow NATO supplies subject to some fiscal demands are met.

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  • Thoughtful
    Apr 2, 2012 - 8:04PM

    Nato supplies is essentially a short term issue albeit important especially for the withdrawal logistics. Pakistan needs to be careful not to make a long term foe of the US led alliance.

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  • syed baqar ahsan
    Apr 2, 2012 - 8:39PM

    he is coming to waste his time, still arrogance persist in USA ATTITUDE

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  • SM
    Apr 3, 2012 - 1:44AM

    The US deputy secretary of state is arriving to try and pressurize Pakistan as usual. Their modus operandi has not changed. Pakistan Army should stand tough like an iron wall against these foreigners who will stop at nothing to weaken Pakistan.

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