Germany pledges €93.5m for health, education and energy in Pakistan


German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle on Saturday revealed that the German government had pledged €93.5m for development in education, health and energy sectors in Pakistan.
Addressing a joint news briefing at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs with Adviser to Prime Minister on National Security Sartaj Aziz, Westerwelle said his government was serious in Pakistan’s economic stability and had pledged €93.5m for the development of education, health and economic sectors.
He said negotiations with the Pakistani administration remained successful during which his government offered friendly constructive cooperation amid enhancing the bilateral ties.
Westerwelle said a number of new ideas was also discussed during his engagement with top Pakistani officials and it was decided that an investment conference be held in Pakistan to attract more investors here.
He said the joint Pak-German forum would be transformed into the Pakistan-Germany Chamber of Commerce that would promote the economic activities between the two countries.
Westerwelle stated that high turnout in the recent Pakistani elections was a big success of the Pakistani people and was an encouraging sign for democracy.
He said his country wanted the South East Asian region to be stable, and welcomed good ties between Pakistan and Afghanistan. He added that a stable Afghanistan was directly connected to the stability of the Pakistan.
The visiting foreign minister also welcomed good ties between Pakistan and India, saying that it was in the better interest of regional stability.
To a question, he said nuclear disarmament had also been a part of the agenda during the sittings with the Pakistani leadership, “as Germany supports the non-proliferation in the region as shared by US President Obama in his ‘Global zero approach’”.
He said the German government considered the issue of drone strikes important and sensitive for the people of Pakistan.
Neither condemning nor openly supporting drone attacks, the German foreign minister expressed deep sympathies with the families of UN soldiers killed in Afghanistan.
Adviser to the Prime Minister on National Security Sartaj Aziz was of the view that during the sittings with the visiting foreign minister, issues of bilateral ties, economic situation and economic betterment came under discussion.
He said both countries agreed on sending a 60-member trade delegation to Germany by October that would attract the German investors towards various sectors of Pakistan’s economy, whereas another decision was to introduce an investment conference here in Islamabad.
He said the military was not the only solution to engage Pakistani Taliban, adding that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had indicated to use all possible options including negotiations to engage the Pakistani Taliban to bring peace in the country.
“It is one of the issues that is necessary for the success of our economic agenda,” Aziz added.
The German FM also said negotiations with Taliban were also centre of the discussion with Pakistani authorities, and his country also supports the fresh start.
To drones strikes, Aziz was of the view that drones were a violation and were brining a lot of resentment and violence in the country, as the measure was proving the counter-productive for the country.
Over Iran-Pakistan Gas pipeline, Aziz added that the petroleum minister had already announced to pursue the IP project in the future.