President Asif Ali Zardari on Wednesday held separate meetings with Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and Turkish President Abdullah Gul on the sidelines of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC) moot in Makkah, Saudi Arabia.
Premier Tun Razak and President Gul pledged to enhance economic and trade cooperation with Pakistan and explore avenues for joint ventures in a host of sectors, including agriculture, construction, energy, infrastructure development and manufacturing sector, said a press release. Regional and international issues of mutual interest were also discussed between the three leaders.
President Zardari said that while substantial gains were made in bilateral trade with Malaysia to the tune of $3 billion, there was potential to exploit various fields to further increase trade. He called upon businessmen and entrepreneurs of both countries to fully utilise the trade facilitation mechanisms, to tap the full potential of trade and investment between the two countries.
Discussing the regional situation in the Middle East, President Zardari and Premier Tun Razak agreed on expanding the positive role of the OIC to strengthen unity and peace among Muslims throughout the world.
Premier Tun Razak added that Malaysia valued its close relationship with Pakistan and vowed to further strengthen its multifaceted relations with Pakistan.
Improving bilateral cooperation
Turkish President Abdullah Gul and President Zardri exchanged views on wide-ranging issues including the ongoing Syria crisis and the reconciliation and peace process in Afghanistan.
President Zardari said the mechanism of High Level Cooperation Council between Pakistan and Turkey was geared towards improving the bilateral cooperation and enhancing its scope to benefit Pakistanis and the Turkish.
President Gul reciprocated the feelings, assuring full support and cooperation to Pakistan in all spheres. He appreciated Pakistan’s sacrifices in the fight against militancy, vowing full help to Pakistan in its efforts in the war on terror.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 16th, 2012.