ISLAMABAD, Feb 9 (APP): The experts on Thursday stressed acting upon the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals to achieve sustainable development and ensure a safe environment.
They were speaking at a roundtable discussion on “Development through Connectivity: Asian Perspective” organized by the China-Pakistan Study Centre (CPSC) at the Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI).
Secretary General of Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) Dr Pornchai said that ACD had a total of 35 members which are promoting effective management of resources including human resources.
Dr Pornchai argued that connectivity was the key to trade and development, and depending on the region, it involved both physical and non-physical components.
He also underscored the importance of addressing the ‘development gap’ and the ‘digital divide’ and highlighted that connectivity had great potential to bring peace and prosperity to Asia. “Together we share, and together we care,” he noted.
CPSC Director Dr Talat Shabbir introduced the Asia Cooperation Dialogue to the participants and apprised them that the Asia Cooperation Dialogue was an intergovernmental organization established in June 2002 in Thailand.
“ACD is important as it provides a forum for Asian countries to exchange views on areas of mutual interest including peace and development,” he added.
DG ISSI Ambassador Sohail Mahmood highlighted the key aspects of ACD’s vision as an inclusive, continent-wide cooperative framework and its emphasis on mutual peace and economic growth.
He noted that Pakistan had become a ‘Prime Mover’ on Connectivity and a ‘Co-Prime Mover’ on Culture and Tourism.
Ambassador Sohail Mahmood underlined that it was important to keep the focus on ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ connectivity and promote greater people-to-people exchanges.
He stressed that the ACD’s goal of building an ‘Asian Community’ was laudable and it must be advanced in an environment conducive to conflict resolution and greater amity and cooperation in the Continent.
In his concluding remarks, Ambassador Khalid Mahmood, Chairman Board of Governors ISSI, appreciated the efforts being made by ACD and its Secretary General and underlined that the future of Asia lies in development through connectivity.