PM urges increase in economic and trade links with Tianjin


Pakistan wants to increase economic and trade links with the city of Tianjin in addition to promoting people-to-people contact, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani said on Wednesday. On his way back from Seoul where he attended the Nuclear Security Summit, Gilani briefly stopped over in Tianjin, the Chinese port city, on Wednesday afternoon. He was received by Mayor of Tianjin Huang Xing Guo and Ambassador Masood Khan at the airport. During the prime minister’s technical stopover, Huang along with senior officials of Tianjin city government called on him. Talking to them Gilani said Pakistan and China had a unique relationship spread over six decades, adding that friendship between Pakistan and China was not only higher than mountains and deeper than oceans but also sweeter than honey and stronger than steel. He said he started his political career at the grassroots level of district government and fully understood the role they could play in national development. The mayor of Tianjin informed the prime minister that Tianjin was one of the four most resourceful municipalities in China and briefed him about the economic infrastructure and educational facilities in the city. Gilani was informed that sea port of Tianjin was the fourth largest in the world which is also used by the Pakistan, Central Asian states, Russia and Mongolia for their trade. Huang said Pakistan and China were good friends, good neighbours and good partners. He invited the prime minister to visit Tianjin during his next visit. Minister for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar, MNA Syed Samsam Ali Bukhari, Pakistan’s Ambassador to the US Sherry Rehman and Pakistan’s Ambassador to China Masood Khan also attended the meeting. Earlier, addressing a delegation of Pakistan Business Association South Korea, led by Hafiz Abdul Waheed, Gilani said he had to face the imprisonment and came out with the pledge of rejecting politics of vendetta and victimization for all times. The prime minister said he would see parliament complete its tenure, whether the political opponents extend the felicitation or not. On this, the Business Community acknowledged the prime minister with a big round of applause and chanted pro-democracy slogans. The prime minister said during his meeting on Tuesday he told the US president that Pakistan democracy would complete its tenure, thus strengthening the democratic process in the country. He directed the ambassador to start issuing machine readable passports to the Pakistanis living in this country and this directive must be implemented well before the forthcoming visit of the President of Pakistan. Separately, a leading South Korean Company K-Water will invest in different hydal projects in Pakistan to general around 3000 MW electricity to help in resolving energy crisis.