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Business & Finance

Pakistan can play its role in diffusing US-China tensions: PM

  • On the Kashmir issue, PM Khan said that the Kashmir issue could be resolved only through dialogue.
  • PM Khan urged the business community of Sri Lanka to participate in the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project, which is a part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
Updated 24 Feb 2021

Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that Pakistan is ready to play its role in reducing the rising tensions between the United States and China.

Addressing at Pakistan-Sri Lanka Trade and Investment Conference in Colombo on Wednesday he said Pakistan can play its part in reducing tensions between the US and China. “Some 50 years back it was Pakistan which opened up China for the United States, it was Pakistan who organized the meeting between the then US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and China, so we hope that we can again play our part,” said PM Khan in his address.

PM Khan was of view that Pakistan would much rather be a country that bring countries and humanity together.

He said that his government’s decision in supporting the businesses community is to alleviate poverty.

During his address, the prime minister lauded China's economic achievements PM Khan said that no country in human history has taken almost 700 million people out of poverty in 30 to 35 years.

PM said that the third thing a country needs to create wealth is stability i.e. political stability, which is having good relationships with its neighbors.

Khan said that when he came to power, he immediately approached Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and offered that the only way forward for the subcontinent “is for us to resolve our differences through dialogue and then improve our trading relationship and diffuse the tension.”

PM Khan said that despite his initial unsuccessful attempt he is optimistic that “sense would prevail ad the only way we could get the people of subcontinent out of poverty is having trading relationships.”

Giving the example of the European Union, PM Khan said that presently it is unthinkable for the European countries to go on war with each other due to its business ties.

On Kashmir issue, PM Khan said that the Kashmir issue could be resolved only through dialogue. “We need to resolve differences through dialogues and not through conflict,” he said.

Talking about Pakistan Sri Lanka trade relationships PM Khan said that Pakistan could learn from Sri Lanka tourism industry, which is way ahead of Pakistan.

He informed that local tourism in Pakistan has ‘exploded’. “There are not enough hotels to accommodate the massive tourism that has gone all over the country especially in our mountain.”

Social media has played a vital role in promoting tourism in Pakistan, he said.

PM Khan urged the business community of Sri Lanka to participate in the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project, which is a part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). He said that CPEC opens the opportunities for Sri Lanka businesses right up to Central Asian countries.

“It gives you an opportunity of connecting with Gwadar, the Pakistani port city right up to Central Asian states. This is the connectivity that Pakistan offers along with CPEC’s Special Economic Zones, which gives incentives to businesses to set up Industries there,” PM Khan said.

Among others, Prime Minister Imran Khan and his Sri Lankan counterpart Mahinda Rajapaksa are also attending the conference.

Earlier, addressing the ceremony, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said Pakistan's focus has now been shifted from geo-politics to geo-economic. He said the current government is committed to take advantage of the geographical location of Pakistan to make it an economic hub.

He said economic diplomacy is also one of the most important components of our foreign policy to give boost to the economic activities.

Addressing the business community, FM Qureshi said Pakistan has taken numerous steps to ensure ease of doing business and remarkable achievements have been made in this regard.