Ukraine is trusted and tested friend of Pakistan: Ukraine envoy

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ISLAMABAD, August 13 (APP): The ambassador of Ukraine in Islamabad,
Volodymyr Lakomov, felicitating the government and people of Pakistan on its Independence Day, highlighted the need to create more favorable conditions for building up mutually beneficial business cooperation between two countries.
“Congratulations to friendly and brotherly Pakistani people on the
occasion of 70th anniversary of independence day. And wish all our Pakistani people, prosperity, good health and peace in the country, peace in their families and peace within.”
In an exclusive interview with APP on the eve of Pakistan Independence
day, he said, “We hope that Pakistani Ukrainian friendship will grow by getting more comprehensive relations, covering all other areas, not only business, culture but people to people cooperation.”
“We see (Our relations with) Pakistan even during my stay as Ambassador
for five years or less, getting stronger, more beautiful and more distinctive. What they are trying to achieve in politics, in their lives, in economics and whatever, we wish success to our brotherly Pakistani people to fulfill all their plans and goals.”
Replying to a query, he said primarily, the two sides needed to
take the relations to next level was to intensify the political contacts, formation of a proper legal base for cooperation in the spheres of trade, investments, finance, transport, launching productive inter-regional, across-industry cooperation.
The relations between Ukraine and Pakistan were likely to get more dynamics with signing of various new agreements, conventions and setting up of commissions, he said, adding these efforts would not only bring both the countries closer but would also assist in making them close partners to achieve economic prosperity and stability.
Very soon, ‘despite the obstruction of Moscow, the Free Trade Agreement with the EU will enter into force and will be fully implemented, that can bring new benefits for Ukraine-Pakistan trade.
He said it would open up new avenues for the investors of the two countries and offer to Pakistani products outreach to European market through Ukraine.
The volume of trade between Ukraine and Pakistan in the year 2014 reached its historical maximum of 498 million US dollars (52.4% increase compared to the year 2013). Export of Ukrainian goods to Pakistan amounted to 397.5 million U.S. dollars, imports of goods 100.8 million U.S. dollars, with positive trade balance for Ukraine 297 million U.S. dollars.
Through a survey, he said, we asked the students of important universities in Ukraine to identify Pakistani products in their nearest super stores and found that Pakistani basmati rice, Kinno, Mango and textile products were available in every super store. This reflected that our people were familiar with Pakistan and its products, he added.
Ukrainian businessmen are also working on opening up super stores in major cities of Pakistan to introduce Pakistani consumers with Ukrainian products.
Responding to a query, he said that Ukrainian machinery and engines were of high quality and cheaper than other competitors.
Ukraine specially appreciates an outstanding cooperation with the Islamic Republic of Pakistan in the military and technical field, which will proceed and will actively develop in future.
“IDEAS – 2014” International Defence Exhibition and Seminar in December of 2014 was marked by a distinguished high-level meeting of the Head of the State Concern “Ukroboronprom”, Roman Romanov with the then Prime Minister of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Muhammad Nawaz Sharif in Karachi.
The stall of the Ukrainian defense industry at “IDEAS –2014” was declared one of the best and was awarded, he said.
He said the Ukrainians, assisted to develop the key industries and national economy of Pakistan in 1960-70’s.The Karachi Steel Mills, which remains largest in Pakistan, a number of powerful hydro stations in Tarbela and others were built in this period, as well as the large pack of Ukraine agricultural machinery and trucks was delivered to Pakistan.
After getting Independence on the 24th of August 1991, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan officially recognized Ukrainian State on the 31st of December, 1991, and both the Sides established Diplomatic Relations on March 16, 1992.
For two decades there has been political dialogue between Ukraine and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan that has become regular, he said.