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ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Monday said that Pakistan desires its “longstanding relationship” with the United States to further deepen and invited the American companies to invest in Pakistan’s information technology and health sectors, apart from reaping dividends from other growing sectors, Foreign Office said.

The foreign minister stated this, while speaking to Congressman Gregory Meeks, Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the United States House of Representative (HFAC-House Committee on Foreign Affairs), who accompanied by Congressman Ami Bera, Chairman of the Asia Subcommittee of the HFAC, met him here at the Foreign Office.

Welcoming the Congressional delegation to Pakistan, the foreign minister underscored that Pakistan valued its longstanding relationship with the United States and wanted to further deepen and widen this relationship.

The foreign minister hoped that more high-level exchanges will take place between both countries strengthening people-to-people ties between them, said a statement of the Foreign Office.

Qureshi emphasised that Pakistan was pursuing imperatives of geo-economics and was determined to make the country a hub of trade, investment, and finance. “He invited US companies to invest in Pakistan’s IT and health sectors- apart from reaping dividends from other growing sectors. Both Congressmen maintained that, given Pakistan’s potential and the size of its 220 million plus consumer market, US companies were keen to invest in Pakistan,” said the statement.

The foreign minister particularly noted that both countries were making impressive strides in deepening co-operation in climate change and in fighting pandemic, it added.

He underlined Pakistan’s commitment to peace, stability and progress in Afghanistan by highlighting Pakistan’s continuing efforts for facilitating humanitarian assistance and economic support to Afghanistan given the twin challenges being faced by the Afghan people.

The foreign minister hoped that the international community will expeditiously extend finical assistance to Afghanistan enabling the country to meet its compelling needs.

“Congressman Meeks deeply appreciated Pakistan’s role in the evacuation of US and Afghan nationals, as well as Special Immigrant Visa Holders (SIVs) from Afghanistan and hoped that the two countries will widen their engagement to stabilise Afghanistan,” the statement further stated.

The foreign minister maintained that Pakistan was firmly committed to promote peace and security in South Asia enabling the region to realise its immense potential and hoped that the US will support Pakistan’s endeavours in that regard.

Apprising the delegation about the egregious human rights violations in the IIOJK, Qureshi hoped that the US Congress will play its due role in raising voice for the rights of the Kashmiri people.

Both Congressmen were visiting Pakistan on foreign minister’s invitation.

It was their standalone visit to Pakistan.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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