Pakistan, Russia review opportunities for further deepening bilateral relations

Pakistan, Russia review opportunities for further deepening bilateral relations

Islamabad (Web Desk/Agencies): The 8th meeting of the Pakistani-Russian Intergovernmental Commission (IGC) on Trade, Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation started in Islamabad on Wednesday.

The three-day session aims at reviewing the existing areas of cooperation and finding new opportunities for further deepening the bilateral relations between the two countries.

During the first day of the commission meeting, technical sessions were held on trade and investment; agriculture; energy; Industry; education; science and technology; information and communication technologies; finance, customs and communication including roads, postal service and railways.

The consultations mainly focused o previous decisions between both the countries on the respective subjects and deliberated on new proposals for cooperation.

The proposals coming out of these technical sessions would be incorporated into the main Protocol of the Commission, which would be discussed, conformed and signed during the plenary session on third day of the session.

The Russian delegation, comprising around 80 members, is participating in the meeting.

Speaking at the opening session of the meeting, Secretary Ministry of Economic Affairs, Dr Kazim Niaz said that huge potential existed there to benefit from the comparative advantage between Pakistan and Russia.

He said Pakistan got a big hit due to devastating floods and appreciated the support extended by the international community during such times of crisis.

Dr Niaz also shared sentiments of gratitude to the Russian government for their continuous support during this whole time.

"Enhancing economic trade and investment relations was the prime priority of Pakistan," he said.

Speaking on the occasion, Deputy Director of the Department of Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation, Israfil Ali-Zade said Russia valued its relations with Pakistan.

He said in all sectors of economy, there was a good level of cooperation and Russia aimed to enhance it further.

"There is a great potential between both economies that needed to be explored more," Mr Israfil said.

On second day of the meet on Thursday, the two sides are scheduled to hold technical consultations on finalizing the ‘Draft Protocol’ of the ongoing 8th IGC session that discussed ways and means to promote cooperation in diverse fields like trade and investment, agriculture, energy, industry, education, science and technology, Information and communication technologies, roads, postal services and railways, finance and customs.

On Friday, there would be main discussion on the implementation of the gas pipeline construction project titled “the Pakistan Stream Gas Pipeline (PSGP),” oil and petroleum products delivery to Pakistan, Russian-Pakistani financial cooperation, implementation of the decisions and recommendations of the seventh meeting of the commission, besides cooperation in different sectors before signing of the final protocol of the 8th meeting of the commission.

It is pertinent to mention here that the 7th session of the commission was held in Yekaterinburg, Russia in the last week of November 2021.