APP70-15 ISLAMABAD: May 15 - Ms. Marriyum Aurangzeb, Minister of State for IB&NH in a meeting with Bangladeshi media delegation. APP

ISLAMABAD, May 15 (APP): Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb talking to a delegation of the visiting journalists from Bangladesh, which called on her here Monday said that the shared art and culture could provide a point of convergence of interests between Pakistan and Bangladesh as well as reinforce the process of strengthening of relations between the two countries, besides opening various avenues for enhanced people-to-people contacts.
She said that culture was a strong connecting force between people belonging to different areas and regions of the world.
Marriyum said that Pakistan and Bangladesh enjoyed cordial and friendly ties deriving strength from religious affinity and shared history that provided a solid foundation on which this relationship rested.
She emphasized the need for further exploring the potential to enhance, expand and diversify existing cooperation to the mutual advantage of the people of both the countries. The Minister reiterated that Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif had a vision of peaceful co-existence and harmony in the region and accordingly was vigorously pursuing the concept of ‘peaceful neighbourhood.’
Marriyum Aurangzeb said that Pakistan had witnessed unprecedented progress under the stewardship of Prime Minister in the fields of economy, energy, infrastructure and development.
In 2013, when the PML-N Government came into power, there were about 2600 terror incidents during the year which had now come down to almost 160. All this became possible due to the prudent and imaginative policies of the present Government, she added.
Responding to various questions from media delegation, the Minister of State said that Pakistan was an emerging economy and all international surveys were reporting positively about country’s rapid growth, development and opportunities for investment.
She said that CPEC was another landmark achievement connecting 65 nations around the globe which would not only benefit the people of Pakistan and China but would also prove as game changer for the entire region.
She informed the delegation that Federal Government had started Asia’s largest healthcare program to address health issues and to improve infrastructure and facilities in hospitals. She said that Prime Minister’s education reforms programme was another precedent established to overhaul education sector, improve transportation system and advance educational curriculum.
To another query, she said that Pakistan was rising as plural entity where civil society was vibrant and media acted as a watchdog with the result that democracy was flourishing with each passing day.
Marriyum told the delegation that the present democratic government was also working with unswerving commitment to counter extremist mindset and to revive an old narrative of peace and harmony with the help of medium of film, broadcast, culture and heritage.
The Minister of State further apprised the delegates that Parliament of Pakistan was first of its kind which had established its secretariat for Sustainable Development Goals and the whole Parliament building was energized with solar energy.
The Minister of State further emphasized the need for enhanced cultural exchanges between the two countries with a view to learn from each other’s expertise and best practices.
The Bangladeshi media delegation endorsed the view that media could play a crucial role in strengthening bilateral ties between the two countries and acknowledged that robust cultural cooperation was vital in reinforcing the cultural linkage between the people of both countries who were already friendly and cordial to each other.
Marriyum Aurangzeb assured the delegation of her full cooperation in regards to formal engagements with the Government of Bangladesh in the fields of media, information, art and culture. Minister of State also wished peace and prosperity for the brotherly people of Bangladesh.