Pakistan, Thailand seek to expand bilateral cooperation

Eurasia News

BANGKOK: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said on Monday that Pakistan desires to comprehensively upgrade the already cordial relations with Thailand in all areas of cooperation, Dispatch News Desk reported.

The premier, who is in Thailand on a day-official visit, was addressing a joint news conference with his Thai counterpart Yingluck Shinawatra after their talks in Bangkok on Monday.

Sharif said consolidation of ties with Thailand has been important component of Pakistan’s vision of Look East which complements Thailand’s policy of Look West.

The prime minister said today they had comprehensive discussions on a full range of issues covering wide areas including collaboration in trade and investment; infrastructure development‚ science and technology‚ defense‚ education and tourism.

He said during their talks the two countries agreed to enhance and deepen cooperation in regional and multilateral framework. He appreciated Thailand’s consistent support for Pakistan’s enhanced partnership with ASEAN

The Pakistani premier said the two countries expressed satisfaction over the progress made in various domains and agreed to the need to further consolidate and expand them for their mutual benefit.

He said economic and trade relations are high priority on his agenda. Pakistan and Thailand have important complementaries to build a strong economic partnership. He said bilateral trade has recently crossed the one billion dollar mark but it is desire of Pakistan to double it by 2018.

Sharif further said he has invited Thai private businesses to invest in Pakistan’s various sectors including infrastructure development‚ energy‚ auto parts manufacturing‚ food processing‚ packaging‚ gems and jewelry‚ and tourism industry. Pakistan Government will extend all facilities to Thai investors.

Moreover, he emphasized that greater connectivity is critical to facilitate trade and investment and to this end Pakistan and Thailand would utilize each other’s geo-strategic location. He said people to people contacts are one of the most important aspects of our relations.

Meanwhile, the Thai Prime Minister said they had very productive meeting and agreed to further expand cooperation in various fields. These included economic‚ security and cultural areas. She said Thailand reciprocates Pakistan’s desire to double trade volume by 2018. She said both sides are working together for new investment opportunities.

The Thai Prime Minister said her country wants promotion of trade and investment links with Pakistan. She said Thai private companies would make investment in Pakistan’s energy sector.

Shinawatra appreciated Pakistan’s contribution to Connect Asia Pacific Summit.