Islamabad, Nov.12 (ANI): Tajikistan President Emomali Rahmon arrived here on Thursday on a two-day state visit, and held significant bilateral discussions with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
Soon after his arrival, President Rahmon was presented with a guard of honour by the Pakistan armed forces.
He then proceeded for a one-on-one meeting with Prime Minister Sharif, where both leaders reportedly emphasized on the need for closer collaboration between Pakistan and Tajikistan at the levels of governments and people.
Addressing contingents of both countries after a signing ceremony, Sharif said that Pakistan attaches great importance to its relations with Central Asia particularly Tajikistan, which is geographically closest to Pakistan among all Central Asian states.
“Tajikistan’s geo-strategic location is crucial to my government’s vision of reaching out to our friendly states in Central Asia, and it is our closest neighbor in that region. Likewise, Tajikistan is the gateway to these countries for our access,” Sharif said.
He expressed satisfaction that bilateral trade between Pakistan and Tajikistan had steadily risen from 15 million dollars in 2011 to 89 million dollars in 2014.
Both nations have set an ambitious economic target worth 500 million dollars to be achieved by 2018.
Sharif said that CASA-1000, a project of regional energy cooperation among Tajikistan, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Kyrgyzstan, would be another major area of cooperation, and added that both delegations had held discussions on it.
President Rahmon said he had held wide-ranging talks with the Pakistani side on further strengthening ties in areas of trade, energy, communication, security and defence, and people-to-people contacts.
“The issue of building lasting peace and genuine stability across Afghanistan was one of the key topics at the delegation-level talks. It was emphasized that other countries support to establishing enduring peace and stability in Afghanistan at earliest meets national interest of Tajikistan and Pakistan and would benefit the whole region,” he said.
President Rahmon is on his sixth visit to Pakistan. He will also meet Pakistan President Mamnoon Hussain. (ANI)