Sunday, February 17, 2019 | ePaper

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Pakistan-Bangladesh Bilateral Relations

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On the auspicious occasion of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan's 71st Anniversary of Independence, I wish to express my profound felicitations to the Pakistani community residing in Bangladesh. On this day in 1947, Pakistan emerged as an independent sovereign state on the map of the world as a result of the struggle of the Muslims of the Subcontinent under the great leadership of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. Since its independence, Pakistan has overcome many challenges and achieved significant milestones that make us proud and confident of a better future ahead.
2. Parliamentary elections of July 25 witnessed high turnout at the polling stations which means democracy is gaining strength in Pakistan as it is evident from the fact that it is third consecutive democratically elected government that would see a smooth transfer of power from one elected government to another. Free media, independent judiciary, vibrant civil society and merit based civil and military bureaucracy underpins our political stability.
3. Pakistan astride the traditional trade routes that link West, Central and South Asia and this entrepôt gave birth to the Indus Valley civilization more than five thousand years ago. The multi-billion-dollar flagship mega project of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is the latest manifestation of the traditional silk routes and part of our vision of seamless regional connectivity. CPEC has the potential to change the fate of the region in terms of socio-economic development. This flagship project will usher in an era of prosperity and progress not only in Pakistan but also in the whole region. The ultimate objective is peace, prosperity, and well-being of the people of the whole region. The CPEC is not only a game-changer but also a fate-changer for the region and beyond.
4. Bangladesh in its own right is a natural hub between South Asia and East Asia. Together, we can act as a bridge to bring this whole region into an integrated network of trade and energy corridors. Our close cooperation in SAARC and other international fora provides a firm basis for this partnership. Our bilateral trade is expected to reach one billion dollars in the next few years. Partnerships in the areas of trade, commerce, health, education and culture have prospered. People to people contact and other exchanges have also gained momentum with regular visits of students and journalists which are sure to pay its dividends.
5. Bangladesh is among the leading countries in social development indicators in the region and Pakistan is keen to learn from Bangladesh's experience. As we celebrate our independence day, I reiterate to the people of Bangladesh our commitment to enduring friendship and brotherhood and for a peaceful, progressive and prosperous Bangladesh.

(Mr. Shah Faisal Kakar High Commissioner for Pakistan to Bangladesh  on the Pakistan Independence Day)

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