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Pakistan serious to enhance ties with Turkey: PM Shehbaz

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has said that Pakistan was ‘serious’ to enhance bilateral, trade and cultural ties with Turkey.

While speaking at the Turkey-Pakistan Business Council in Ankara on Wednesday, the premier put forth the case for Turkish investment in Pakistan.

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He stated to the participants that they [the Pakistani delegation] were here to convey to Turkish people, President Erdogan and the business community that they “genuinely and seriously” wanted to work with Turkey.

PM Shehbaz, currently part of a high-level designation on a three-day visit to Turkey, is accompanied by Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb among others.

The premier emphasised the importance of the transformation of brotherly relations between Pakistan and Turkey through the promotion of trade, investment and cultural relations.

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He also pointed out the shared history and culture of the nations of the two countries.

PM Shehbaz said that “hundreds of [Turkish] businessmen” had come to Pakistan between 2008 and 2018. He further appreciated the investment and participation in humanitarian projects of the Turkish business community in Pakistan.

He stated that Pakistan wished to “seriously engage” with Turkey because their achievements were “outstanding”.

The premier called upon the two countries to collaborate and cooperate in various sectors including, the automobile industry, agriculture, textile and alternative energy.

PM Shehbaz also highlighted the “mass opportunities” in Pakistan because of its young population.

In a separate development earlier on Wednesday, a high-level Turkish delegation headed by Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu met PM Shehbaz and Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari along with other members of the Pakistani delegation.

According to media reports, the meeting involved discussion on ways to make strong the bilateral ties between Pakistan and Turkey and promoting cooperation in different sectors such as trade, investment, education, communication and culture.

PM Shehbaz stated during the meeting that the “historic and brotherly” relations between the two countries were achieving a new dimension, that was leading to progress for both countries.

He stated that a strong relationship of mutual respect existed between both the countries and that Turkey was a role model for other nations owing to its rapid progress under President Erdogan.

The Turkish foreign minister said that Pakistan and Turkey had “deep-rooted” relations, adding that it was the desire of the latter’s government to enhance ties in various areas.

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