LAHORE: “The presence of an honorary consul general in Lahore is a testimony to the importance that Italy attaches to Lahore,” Italian Ambassador Adriano Chiodi Cianfarani said on Thursday.
The envoy made the remarks at an event organised to introduce Abdul Samad Dawood, the new Italian honorary consul general, in the city. Ambassador Cianfarani commenced his speech by shedding light on the multifaceted ties between the two states. The presence of an honorary consul general in Lahore is a testimony to the importance that Italy attaches to Lahore, the capital of the Punjab, and a key cultural and economic hub of Pakistan. He said the city was also pivotal as it was home to a significant number of Italian investments. “The city has been improving in a bevy of respects on a daily basis. This makes me ecstatic,” the ambassador said.
Going beyond the commercial ties between Italy and the province, he said that Italy had been playing an active role in the city’s cultural scene. Ambassador Cianfarani also spoke about the increasing cooperation between Italy and the Punjab in the education sector. The occasion also presented the envoy with an opportunity to bid adieu to Pakistan as he has been posted to Croatia. Ambassador Cianfarani described his three-year tenure in Pakistan as “amazing and unparalleled with never a dull moment.” He also thanked federal and provincial institutions, civil society organisations, the media and the business community for their exemplary goodwill and support.
Ambassador Cianfarani praised Hussain Dawood, the outgoing honorary consul general, on the occasion saying that he had “faithfully served the Italian flag over the course of his tenure.” Dawood spoke about the comprehensive efforts made to promote ties between the two states. He thanked the four Italian ambassadors he had the privilege of working with over the course of his extensive tenure. “Italy has been quietly working with Pakistan for over four decades…they have helped Pakistan preserve scores of archaeological sites nationwide. This is not common knowledge,” Dawood said. He wished luck to the incoming honorary consul general, his son.
Samad thanked the Italian government for reposing confidence in his abilities. He said he had spent his formative years in the city. He said he had developed a strong affinity with the culture of Italy after he had moved there. Samad praised the Italian government for helping with conservation efforts in the Karakoram Range.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 5th, 2015.