ISLAMABAD, Feb 14 (APP):Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi Friday said the signing of Pakistan-Turkey Strategic Economic Framework (SEF) by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Prime Minister Imran Khan would help convert the existing ideal political relationship between the two countries into a strategic partnership.

Under the SEF, which was proposed during the visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to Turkey last year and was being deliberated by officials since then, a 71-point Plan of Action had been agreed upon to achieve the objective, he added.

Foreign Minister Qureshi, flanked by Special Assistant to the PM on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan, was addressing a press conference here to highlight the major points of President Erdogan’s visit.

He lauded President Erdogan for raising voice for the oppressed Kashmiris and said the Turkish support for the just resolution of Kashmir dispute had worn the hearts of Pakistanis and Kashmiris alike.

Similarly, the foreign minister said, President Erdogan’s clear stance on the issue of FATF (Financial Action Task Force) was also very important.

With the FATF’s plenary session beginning in Paris on February 16, the timing of President Erdogan’s statement was very important and indicated that Turkey stood with Pakistan, he added.

The foreign minister in this respect also recalled that during the recent meeting of FATF in Beijing, Pakistan’s point of view on the plan of action and its seriousness on the issue was appreciated.

Qureshi said during the visit of President Erdogan, seven Joint Working Groups comprising senior officials from Pakistan and Turkey were established whose serious deliberations led to the preparation and signing of 13 important memorandums of understanding (MoUs) and documents.

He said during the meeting at leadership level, it was recognized that now was the time to convert Pakistan-Turkey close and historic relations into strategic economic partnership for mutual benefit.

He said during the talks, decision on establishment of two new Working Groups for cooperation in defence industry and water and agriculture, respectively was also taken.

The foreign minister said Prime Minister Imran Khan and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan also signed a Joint Declaration.

He said the Pakistan-Turkey Joint Business Forum, attended by around 100 chief executive officers and senior representatives of Turkish companies as well as members of Pakistan business community and chambers, provided the best opportunity of direct interaction between the two private sectors.

He said the visit of President Erdogan to Pakistan and the recent visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to Malaysia also dispelled the negative impression that was created after the latter could not attend the Kuala Lumpur Summit.

President Erdogan’s visit gave a clear message that Turkey was a close friend and stood with Pakistan, he added.