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UAE-Pakistan Joint Ministerial Commission concludes 11th meeting in Islamabad

posted on 09/11/2013: 1487 views

Islamabad: The UAE-Pakistan Joint Ministerial Commission concluded its 11th meeting on Thursday in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad.

The UAE Foreign Minister, H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, chaired the UAE side at the meeting while the Pakistani side was led by Sartaj Aziz, Adviser to the Pakistani Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs.

In remarks at the meeting, Sheikh Abdullah said that it demonstrated the keenness of the two countries to further develop their bilateral ties in a way that reflects the aspirations and directives of the leadership of the two countries and serves their mutual interests and goals.

He said that the agenda of the meeting also showed the sincere desire of the two countries to boost relations of co-operation in diverse areas including economy, trade, investment, energy, oil and gas, civil aviation, transport, finance and banking as well as charitable and humanitarian works.

The Pakistani side stated that Pakistan attaches significant importance to the visit by Sheikh Abdullah and that the joint ministerial committee meeting had provided a fitting opportunity to discuss ways of boosting the distinguished bilateral relations and the opening up of new avenues of joint cooperation in various domains.

The two sides held bilateral consultations and exchanged views on a variety of regional and international issues of mutual concern. They agreed to strengthen ties between the two countries and push economic and trade relations forward by tapping into available potential and opportunities. The two sides also expressed satisfaction at the growing volume of trade exchange, noting the need for more efforts to be exerted to support bilateral economic relations.

Sheikh Abdullah and Aziz signed the minutes of the committee meeting.

On the side-lines of the meeting, Abdullah Al-Turifi, Chief Executive Officer of the Emirates Securities and Commodities Authority (ESCA), and Tahir Mahmood, Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP), signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in the presence of Sheikh Abdullah and Aziz.

The MoU aims to encourage foreign investment through facilitating the listing of public joint stock companies supervised by the financial market regulators in the two countries. The MoU will also provide protection for investors, ensure efficiency of the stock markets and exchange training and expertise.

The MoU also stresses the importance of sharing technical support, particularly in investment management systems and information that public joint stock companies must disclose to investors, listing of issues, development of innovative Islamic banking products, stock market regulation and futures contracts.

The MoU also covers the process of training and building the capacities of licensed professionals to ensure integrity of transactions and efficient professional performance.

As an important trade partner, the UAE has become the largest investor in Pakistan, with a diverse portfolio in telecommunications, aviation, real estate, banking, and the oil and gas industry.

More than 18 Emirati companies are currently operating in Pakistan. The two countries are exploring new sectors to further strengthen trade, economic and investment relations as well as inviting Pakistani companies to benefit from the infrastructure in the UAE to access new markets in the region and open up new prospects for joint cooperation.

The two countries have already signed several economic and security agreements, the most important of them being the agreement on avoidance of double taxation, the agreement on promotion and protection investment and the cooperation agreement for preventing and combating crime and terrorism.

The UAE Foreign Minister expressed his gratitude to members of the preparatory committee for the efforts they had made to ensure the success of the ministerial committee meeting. He said that Abu Dhabi will host the next meeting of the committee. He also stressed the importance of following up and implementing the committee's recommendations in various fields.

At a joint press conference convened following the conclusion of the 11th meeting of the UAE-Pakistan Joint Ministerial Commission, H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister, emphasised the importance of relations between the UAE and Pakistan.

Commenting on the few barriers which faced the 10th session of the joint ministerial commission in Abu Dhabi, H.H. Sheikh Abdullah said, "In general, the committee has achieved results. The implementation of the committee's decisions was good despite these barriers which can be solved through diplomatic channels." He made note of the establishment of the Joint Trade Council, which was agreed during talks with Pakistani Adviser on Foreign Affairs and National Security, Sartaj Aziz, as a mechanism for solving issues, while other mechanisms can be developed in order to address other issues such as energy, based on the huge potentials to develop energy and renewable energy.

Speaking on the current developments relating to reconciliation in Afghanistan, the foreign minister said the UAE continues its contacts with Kabul in order to follow up the solutions in order to bolster cooperation in a favourable ambience.

For his part, Pakistani Adviser on Foreign Affairs and National Security, Sartaj Aziz, said the visit of H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan and the large UAE delegation reflect the commitment of the UAE to bolstering and expanding cooperation in several spheres and in trade and economy in particular.

Aziz expressed his satisfaction with the volume of trade with the UAE which exceeded US$10 billion. He also made note of the importance of the establishment of the Joint Trade Council which will convene its first meeting early next year. – Emirates News Agency, WAM


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