Published Date: Feb 5, 2015
Ambassador gives sound recipe for region’s economic uplift
Thursday, February 05, 2015 – Islamabad—Lars Gunner Wigemark, Ambassador of European Union, Wednesday said Pakistan should move forward after Peshawar school tragedy and eye bigger goals like region’s economic uplift and normalization of relations with neighbours. He was addressing a seminar on “Deepening of Pakistan-EU relations: post Afghan withdrawal” organised by Sustainable Development Policy Institute here Wednesday. He said the European Union we would like to do more in terms of counter-terrorism and sharing intelligence. Pakistan should be champion of regional integration just like six European states that had done a lot in case of EU.
The ambassador said that India should not press panic button at this stage as everyone acknowledge India’s role being played in trade. He welcomed Pak-China economic corridor as long it involves others also. He hoped relations with Iran will also improve one day. The ambassador said that EU was a union of 21 democracies which arose from ashes of World War-II.
“We support democracies in the world in education and health sectors in particular,” he said. “Although it was not flawless model yet still Europeans are trying to pool resources for an integrated region which seeks the countries to secede some of their sovereign rights.” He said actions undertaken in promoting sovereignty have impact on neighbors. He said that EU welcomes improvement in Pak-Afghan ties as it was important for the both countries. He highlighted importance of transit trade agreement for SAARC countries. He said that we not only promote trade with regions but also within region and referred to his country Sweden’s trade with Norway and Italy asking Pakistan to explore trade vistas with its neighboring India.
He said that EU will work in poor areas in the smaller provinces and south Punjab to combat militancy in Pakistan. He supported local elections as the MPs should not indulge in local issues. EU is the largest donor as well as trade partner of Pakistan. He said that a country considering to trade with EU should implement the conditionality’s of EU especially those related to human rights. He said that death penalty does not help in ameliorating the ties between EU and Pakistan. Former Ambassador to Balgium, Munawar Saeed Bhatti said that EU countries had been centre of economic and cultural activities like a model for us. He said that Pak-EU relationship is long term, friendly and closer than that with many other countries. Malick Sohail Hussain Chairman Coordination, FPCCI, said that GSP Plus status shows the confidence of the world community in Pak exports. Mome Saleem said scholarship scheme was very productive which made students knowledge producers and not knowledge managers. Ambassador Shafqat Kakakhel, Chair BoG, SDPI said the EU was a spectator example of supranational integration.
Source : http://pakobserver.net/detailnews.asp?id=259697