Islamabad:Lady Catherine, High Representative, EU, called on Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani at the PM House today and said Pakistan successes are our successes and Pakistan challenges are our challenges.
Lady Ashton said the world appreciates the sacrifices rendered by Pakistan in the war on terror adding the EU will continue to support Pakistan in this regard and the GSP plus is the manifestation of the same thinking. She said, the Trilogue in which representatives of European Council, European Commission and European Parliament in Brussels, scheduled today, are expected to figure out the positive outcome for Pakistan leading to increase in exports of Pakistan to the EU countries.
She said that the EU wants to help Pakistan in dealing with its economic problems and in this regard co-operation in the fields of education, health, and infrastructure and lately in the energy sector would continue to aimed at eradicate poverty, ignorance and disease which would greatly help in combating extremism and terrorism tendencies in the country.
She expressed her satisfaction over the budget of Pakistan ( 2012-13) adding that it has given due priorities to the social sector that would, in a way, empower the people so critical for a democratic dispensation. The EU High Representative expressed her firm hope that Pakistan would continue to make significant strides in strengthening democracy adding that all the institutions of the government will make their due contribution in the cherished goal.
The Prime Minister said that smooth transition to next government was his dream which would be realized first time in the history of Pakistan after fair free and impartial forthcoming general elections in the country. I am the longest serving Prime Minister of Pakistan and has presented fifth budget, the Prime Minister said.
The Prime Minister made the offer of inviting the EU Observers to witness the general elections in Pakistan which are going to be truly representative of the people’s voice and testimony to the commitment of the present government in the parliamentary democracy in the true sense of the words.
The Prime Minister thanked the EU for the support which it has extended in ATP (Autonomous Trade Preferences) and expressed the hope that the Trilogue would make worthwhile and decisive progress in its today’s meeting at Brussels.
The Prime Minister said that the democratic government of Pakistan had passed amendments in the constitution which have restored the originality of the constitution which was bitterly disfigured by the successive dictators.This legislative mechanism will make a qualitative difference in the human rights situation in the country which is already much better as compared to the vast number of other countries around the world.
The Prime Minister said that Pakistan had suffered immensely both in terms of human lives and economy in the war on terror as being the frontline state but vowed that the nation was committed and has taken the ownership and therefore committed to defeat the forces of extremism and terrorism. The Prime Minister said that Pakistan supported the Afghan led and Afghan owned solution based on political reconciliation. Pakistan wants stable, prosperous and sovereign Afghanistan because it is in the best interest of Pakistan, the Prime Minister added.
The Prime Minister said that poverty breeds terrorism and areas of FATA, Sindh Balochistan and Southern Punjab were vulnerable. The BISP programme has been proving the social safety network to the poorest of the poor by providing the financial assistance to them directly including imparting training to the poor so that they could stand on their feet. Foreign Minister, Hina Rabbani Khar, Dr,Hafeez Shaikh and other senior officials were also present on the occasion.