Peace, security in South Asia essential for progress: SAARC Chamber

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ISLAMABAD, Apr 22 (APP):The SAARC Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), Senior Vice President Iftikhar Ali Malik Monday strongly condemned the coordinated blasts in Sri Lanka and said that an environment of peace and security in South Asia was essential for economic development.

Iftikhar Malik said that Pakistan attached great importance to its neighbours, South Asia and believed in lasting peace adding that peace and the security of the region was a primary responsibility of all.

“An environment of peace and security is essential for regional cooperation to progress and achieve economic development and prosperity of our people,” he added.

He extended his deepest condolences to the families of the victims and to the people and government of Sri Lanka via SAARC CCI President Ruwan Edirisinghe, who left for Sri Lanka after his visit to Pakistan on Sunday night.

“We stand together with the people and government of Sri Lanka in this hour of grief,” he said according to press statement issued here.

President Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) Engineer Daroo Khan Achakzai, Chairman Accounts Committee SAARC Chamber Zubair Ahmad Malik, Chairman Coordination Committee Sohail Hussain Malik, Secretary General Ms Hina Saeed, Deputy Secretary General Zulfikar Ahmad Butt, former Secretary General Rehmat Ullah Javed, Chairman SAARC Committee on youth entrepreneurship Shaharyar Ali Malik were also present on the occasion.

He said the number of incidents endangering South Asia was on the rise and terrorism remained the single-largest threat to peace and stability in the geopolitical region, and the world.

Highlighting the role of Pakistan against terrorism, he said the country Pakistan itself was a victim of terrorism. He further said the world, especially the US should recognise the sacrifices of Pakistan on war against terrorism.

Iftikhar Malik said SAARC CCI President Ruwan Edirisinghe tour to Pakistan was successful and SAARC CCI was working hard to boost regional trade besides eliminating poverty in South Asia.

He urged the governments of SAARC member countries to adopt policies helpful to push export sector in regional trade agreements, while looking at issues of competitiveness across sectors in the form of reforms and liberalisation and focusing on the trade policy.