Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani accompanied by a high level delegation will reach Brussels on June 02 (today) on a three-day visit of the EU capital.
According to Spokesman of PM House, Prime Minister will lead Pakistan side at the Second EU-Pakistan Summit scheduled to be held on June 04, 2010. The EU side will be represented by Mr. Herman Van Rompuy, President European Council, Mr. Jose Manuel Barrosso, President European Commission and Baroness Catherine Ashton, EU High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy, says a press release received here today from Brussels.
Continuation of the Summit level engagement was a testament to the importance the EU attaches to its relationship with Pakistan. Dialogue at the highest level will give further impetus to a sustainable EU-Pakistan political and economic partnership.
Recognizing Pakistan’s importance for regional and global security and its role in the field of counter-terrorism, the European Union has in the recent years shown a growing urgency to boost ties with Pakistan. Pledging new attention on Pakistan due to the sacrifices made by its people, government and the Armed Forces as well as the massive losses sustained by its economy, the EU wants to target war ravaged areas with its support focussing on rural development, natural resource management, education and development of human resources.
The EU agrees to cooperate for improving Pakistan’s counter-terrorism capabilities including support to the police forces. The EU also underlines the importance of strong trading relationship to enhance bilateral trade through a possible Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and through exploring preferential tariff regime in the form of GSP Plus.
Over the past few years, the provision of institutional framework has forged a new era of EU-Pakistan cooperation as the EU remains Pakistan’s largest trading partner with 20 percent of its total exports heading to the European markets. The EU being the biggest common market and the largest trading arena possesses enormous potential both in terms of size and volume.
It is expected that the second summit will herald a qualitative up-gradation in political and economic relations. Possibilities will be explored to provide greater market access for Pakistani products to help Pakistan achieve sustainable social and economic development as well as overcome the huge economic and social fallout of war on terror.
From its perspective, Pakistan wishes to forge a comprehensive, lasting and strategic partnership with the EU to bring about political and economic stability in South Asia and the world.
At the Summit, the Prime Minister will convey Pakistan’s deep appreciation for the EU’s assistance and support in respect of Internally Dislocated Persons and their rehabilitation. He will also draw attention to the successful military operations against extremist launched with the full support of all political parties and the people of Pakistan. Regional situation including Afghanistan and Pakistan India relations will also come under discussion.
Prime Minister, Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani will apprise the EU and Belgian leadership about the administrative and legislative measures adopted by the Government of Pakistan to strengthen parliament and democracy ensure provision of social justice, freedom of the Press, empowerment of women and minorities and poverty alleviation.
During his discussion with the Belgian Prime Minister, further enlargement in bilateral cooperation in the fields of education, trade and investment would be examined.
In his interactions, the Prime Minister will raise awareness in the European Union and the member states about the legal framework and institutional arrangements put in place to ensure and maintain an investment friendly environment in the country. He will also invite Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Pakistan in energy sector and infrastructure development, oil and gas exploration, agro-industry and chemical and pharmaceutical industry, etc.
The Prime Minister’s entourage includes, Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Foreign Minister, Makhdoom Amin Fahim, Minister for Commerce, Syed Sumsam Ali Shah Bukhari, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting, Parliamentarians from all political politics having representation in the National Assembly and senior officials.