Azerbaijan vows to help flood victims

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PM Shehbaz and Azerbaijani President review the close and cordial bilateral ties

Special Report

ASTANA: Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif met with President Ilham Aliyev on the sidelines of the Sixth Summit of Conference for Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA) at Astana, Kazakhstan.

Both leaders reviewed the close and cordial bilateral ties, with a view to further enhance cooperation in the areas of trade, investment, education, information technology, security, agriculture, connectivity and energy.

The Prime Minister also briefed President Aliyev on his government’s efforts to rehabilitate the millions of flood-affected people in Pakistan and restore their livelihoods damaged by the unprecedented climate change induced natural disaster.

The Prime Minister underscored that damage to standing crops and inability to cultivate in the coming sowing season had exacerbated the threat of food shortage in the country. Import of urea was essential to avert this danger and revive the agricultural produce in the country. President Aliyev assured him of Azerbaijan’s full support in this context.

Regional and global issues of common interest were also discussed at the meeting. Prime Minister Sharif appreciated Azerbaijan’s steadfast position on Jammu and Kashmir and its valuable role as member of the OIC Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir. He reaffirmed Pakistan’s principled support to Azerbaijan on former Nagorno-Karabagh and appreciated President Ilham Aliyev’s endeavors for bringing long-term and sustainable peace in the South Caucasus.

Both leaders renewed their commitment to intensify and deepen bilateral engagement in diverse areas of mutually beneficial cooperation, and reviewed progess of various ongoing initiatives for promoting connectivity, trade and investment.

Prime Minister underlined the need for fostering close cooperation between the two countries in the field of energy, which is a high priority area for his government. Prime Minister has nominated Minister of State for Petroleum as the focal point for bilateral energy cooperation between Azerbaijan and Pakistan who visited Baku last month. Both leaders agreed to fast track discussions on energy collaboration between the two countries through robust engagement.

Prime Minister Sherbaz Sharif proposed leadership level consultations in Islamabad aimed at advancing Regional Connectivity which was received positively.

This was the second interaction between the two leaders in the wake of their last meeting on the sidelines of SCO in September 2022 at Samarkand, Uzbekistan and afforded a productive opportunity for catalyzing multifaceted economic engagement   between Pakistan and Azerbaijan in keeping with the great tradition of amity and cooperation.