Pakistan committed to Afghan-led reconciliation process: Nawaz

* PM says world should urge India to respect human rights of people of held Kashmir and implement UNSC resolutions forthwith

Pakistan committed to Afghan-led  reconciliation process: Nawaz


DAVOS: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday said his government had achieved economic stability and turned around the country's economy in a short span of three years. He was talking to the Group Chief Executive Officer of VimpelCom, Jean Charlie, in Davos on the sidelines of the 47th World Economic Forum's Annual Meeting.

The prime minister said his government was pursuing a comprehensive reforms agenda, besides successfully delivering on the major objectives of combating terrorism, economy and power shortages. Jean Charlie said he was seeking public private partnership for working with the government on education and skills development programmes.

Charlie said his company was planning to launch new products in Pakistan as the country had come to the forefront as the largest emerging market. He lauded the investment environment in Pakistan and noted it was very attractive for foreign investors. He was very excited about the future of Pakistan as it had undergone a major transformation over the past few years.

The expansion of services would also be beneficial for Pakistan. He termed recent government policies as "the best" and said his company would use Pakistan as the hub to support its global telecom business.

VimpleCom is an Amsterdam based international telecommunications and technology business development firm with over 200 million customers around the world. It has invested USD 1 billion in Pakistan's telecom sector through the merger of Mobilink with Warid.

Meanwhile, Pakistan and Switzerland on Thursday took note of the rich potential of their bilateral ties and called for exploring new avenues of cooperation for their mutual benefit. Nawaz Sharif expressed his desire to strengthen relations with Switzerland in a meeting with President of the Swiss Confederation, Doris Leuthard, in Davos on the sidelines of the 47th Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF). The prime minister is here to meet world leaders and heads of top corporate companies to share with them, what he claims, is the Pakistan success story.

Prime Minister Sharif said he deeply valued relations with Switzerland, which were based on mutual cooperation and trust, saying Pakistan looked forward to enhancing a bilateral partnership in diverse areas. He affirmed Switzerland as a friend and an important trade and investment partner of Pakistan.

He termed Switzerland's objective, non-discriminatory and criteria-based approach on NSG membership commendable. "We hope that as part of the NSG troika, Switzerland continues to maintain this principled stand, especially when it takes over the chair of the group later this year." The Swiss president said her county's stance on NSG was non discriminatory and based on principles.

The Pakistani Prime Minister said his country was committed to facilitating and supporting an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace and reconciliation process as envisaged under the quadrilateral framework. "We believe that security of Pakistan is directly linked to peace and stability in Afghanistan," he added. He said Pakistan continued to host millions of Afghan refugees for more than three decades.

"We currently host around 1.5 million refugees and about an equal number of undocumented Afghans. We believe that there is a need to create necessary pull-factors inside Afghanistan for sustained repatriation of Afghan refugees." The Swiss President lauded the role played by Pakistan in giving refuge to over 3 million Afghan refugees on its soil and said Pakistan should continue to play its role in promoting good relations with Afghanistan.

Nawaz Sharif also said Pakistan wanted peaceful and amicable resolution of all outstanding issues with India. He also expressed his deep concern over the recent developments in Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir and the gross human rights violations by Indian Occupation Forces, particularly the oppression of Kashmiris' rights after the extrajudicial murder of Burhan Wani.