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ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Monday, instructed Pakistani envoys abroad to make concerted efforts to implement the government's economic agenda in their host countries, and urged them to cultivate mutually-beneficial trade and economic partnerships with Central and South Asian countries, with an enhanced focus on trade promotion, investments, energy cooperation, and regional connectivity.

As part of the government's efforts to promote economic diplomacy, Foreign Minister Qureshi chaired a virtual meeting on economic diplomacy with participation from Pakistan's envoys to Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Maldives, and Nepal, Foreign Office said.

While underscoring the growing significance of geo-economics in international politics, a statement of the Foreign Office stated that the foreign minister stated that economic diplomacy had assumed centre stage in modern diplomatic practice.

He highlighted the government's paradigm shift from geo-politics to geo-economic cooperation, and urged the envoys to make concerted efforts to implement the government's economic agenda.

Qureshi briefed the envoys about his fruitful interaction during his recent visits to Central Asian countries.

He expressed hope that peace in Afghanistan could contribute towards further deepening of Pakistan's economic ties with Central Asia.

With regard to extending maximum facilitation to the Pakistani diaspora, the foreign minister apprised the envoys about launching of the FM Portal.

He asked envoys to cultivate and broaden mutually-beneficial trade and economic partnerships with Central and South Asian countries, with an enhanced focus on trade promotion, investments, employment creation, tourism, technology transfer, energy cooperation and regional connectivity.

The foreign minister highlighted the geo-strategic significance of Pakistan as it offered a massive opportunity to serve as a regional transit hub.

He also asked envoys to showcase the investment potential of the country and instructed them to work on removing bottlenecks that hinder expansion of economic collaboration with the host countries and identifying new sectors for promotion of economic cooperation.

During the meeting, the envoys apprised the foreign minister about their respective Missions' activities in the economic and commercial domains.

They also shared their action plans to deepen Pakistan's economic footprint in their countries of accreditation.

In keeping with Prime Minister Imran Khan's vision, Foreign Minister Qureshi has consistently stressed on promotion of economic diplomacy and increased economic cooperation with partner countries, the statement stated, adding that regular virtual meetings and interactions on economic diplomacy with Pakistani envoys in key capitals are part of these efforts. This was the seventh meeting of the series.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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