APP76-25 MALE: July 25 - Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif shaking hands with President of Maldives H.E. Abdullah Yameen Abdul Gayoom at President's Office. APP

MALE (Maldives), July 25 (APP): Prime Minister Muhammad
Nawaz Sharif Tuesday emphasized the importance of economic
cooperation, especially the need to enhance bilateral
trade between Pakistan and Maldives, observing it was
currently below its true potential.
The prime minister said this during a delegation level
meeting with President of Maldives Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom
here at the President’s Office.
He was assisted by Advisor to the Prime Minister on
Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz, Senator Pervaiz Rashid, Pakistan
Tourism Development Corporation Managing Director, President of
Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industries and
other senior officials.
The prime minister said Pakistan attacheed importance to
its relations with the Maldives, which were characterized by
cordiality, mutual respect and commonality of interests.
He indicated that signing a number of memorandums of
understanding on tourism, trade promotion, higher education and
human resource capacity building would help further consolidate
bilateral relations.
The establishment of Pakistan- Maldives Joint Business
Council would not only promote trade but also investment in
different sectors, he added.
The prime minister also highlighted possibilities of
cooperation in other sectors, including defence, health,
education, sports, fisheries, tourism and culture.
The two leaders agreed that the South Asian Association
for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) could provide a conducive and
congenial atmosphere to build economic synergies and transform
the quality of life of the peoples of South Asia.
Pakistan, the prime minister said, was committed to the
SAARC charter and wished to see SAARC as a vibrant regional
He said Pakistan was deeply concerned over the global
environmental issues and in particular, the threat that global
warming posed to the island nations such as the Maldives.
Pakistan was ready to cooperate with the Maldives in the
field of climate change, he added.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif also held a one-to-one meeting
with the President of Maldives wherein he thanked the president
for the warm welcome and the invitation to attend the 52nd
Independence Day of Maldives.
Earlier, the prime minister was given a warm welcome
when he arrived at the President House. The President of
Maldives received him. A contingent of Maldivian armed forces
presented the Guard of Honour while a gun salute was also
presented to him. The prime minister reviewed the guard of
Schoolchildren greeted the prime minister and Begum
Kalsoom Nawaz with traditional dance and national songs.

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