DUSHANBE: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif expressed his government’s commitment for the early realisation of CASA-1000 project which will see Pakistan import 1000 Megawatts (MW) of electricity in the country during a one-on-one meeting the Tajik President Emomali Rahmon.
Nawaz, who was on a two day visit to Tajikistan on the invitation on Tajik President, was accompanied by a high-level delegation comprising, the Minister for Water & Power, Minister for Textile Industry, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs, and senior officials.
Later in a joint statement, they affirmed their desire to increase bilateral security and defence cooperation, with Pakistan committing to provide assistance in developing Tajikistan's defence capability. Pakistan would also provide training to the Tajik armed forces and security personnel.
During the meeting the two leaders agreed to set a target of expanding bilateral trade to US $500 million over the next three years and to work towards a Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA).
The two sides further agreed to convene the 5th session of the Joint Ministerial Commission in Islamabad during 2014 in order to promote a favorable environment for investors from both countries. They also agreed to establish a Joint Business Council (JBC).
Underscoring the need for strengthening transit and transportation facilities and enhanced cooperation at the regional level, both sides noted that early finalisation of the Trilateral Transit Trade Agreement among Afghanistan, Pakistan and Tajikistan would provide a boost to trade and economic relations. It was further noted that direct road links would impart more impetus to these efforts.
Pakistan also undertook to provide easy access to Tajikistan to goods via its seaports in Karachi and Gwadar.
Deliberating on regional and international issues, Nawaz and Rahmon affirmed that a peaceful and stable Afghanistan would strengthen the prospects for regional peace and stability and expressed their support for an inclusive Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace and reconciliation process. They also reiterated their commitment to utilize the Quadrilateral forums to reinforce efforts in support of peace, security and stability in the region.
In the presence of the two leaders, the following agreements and MoUs were signed:
I. Agreement between the Governments of the Republic of Tajikistan and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan on Formation of a Joint Working Group Combating the International Terrorism;
II. Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan through the Ministry of Textile Industry and the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan through the Ministry of Industries & New Technologies on Collaboration in Textiles Development;
III. Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the Field of Vocational Training between the Government of Islamic Republic of Pakistan and the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan;
IV. Memorandum of Understanding between the Department of Libraries, Capital Administration & Development Division, Government of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and the National Library of Tajikistan; and
V. Memorandum of Understanding between Tajik National University, Dushanbe and National University of Modern Languages, Islamabad, Pakistan.
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