The 8th Intergovernmental Commission (IGC), according to Minister for Economic Affairs Sardar Ayaz Sadiq, will lay the groundwork for a “new relationship” between Russia and Pakistan in a variety of areas, including energy, economy, trade, technology, education, and business to business transactions. According to Ayaz Sadiq, during the three days of the IGC meeting in Islamabad, topics of mutual interest were discussed on a wide range of topics, including rail transportation, food security, aviation, education, oil and gas, natural resources, finance, the opening of financial arrangements between the two countries, and many other topics. He said “a few agreements of mutual cooperation would be signed and some of them were in the pipeline. ”Follow-up of these developments is going to be a key factor in implementation of these projects,” he added. The minister also expressed gratitude for Russian government for agreeing to suspend debt service for Pakistan during this critical time. He also appreciated international community for helping the affected communities [affected by recent floods] of Pakistan. However, much more was needed to be done for rehabilitation of the people, he added. Working groups in diverse fields Earlier, the Inter-Governmental Commission (IGC) of Pakistan and Russia continued deliberations and reached an agreement to form working groups and further the existing cooperation between the two countries in diverse fields including energy, oil and gas. The 8th three-day meeting of the IGC, which started here on Wednesday, reviewed the areas of cooperation and looked into ways and means of exploring new opportunities for strengthening bilateral relations. Experts from the two nations held technical meetings and discussed ways to further advance their mutually beneficial cooperation in areas such as trade and investment, agriculture, energy, industry, education, science and technology, information and communication technologies, finance, customs, and communication, in addition to roads, postal services, and railways. The Russian side noted that the negotiations were being led by Nikolai Shulginov, their energy minister, and that this indicated that the energy sector was the main emphasis. The two sides have committed to work together to advance the energy sector, and Pakistan would gain from Russian knowledge in the oil and gas industry. The visiting delegation also recommended that Pakistan benefit from Russia’s experience in research and science. On the last day of the meeting on Friday, there would be a main discussion on the implementation of the gas pipeline construction project titled “the Pakistan Stream Gas Pipeline (PSGP),” oil and petroleum products delivery to Pakistan, Russian-Pakistani financial cooperation, implementation of the decisions and recommendations of the seventh meeting of the commission, besides cooperation in different sectors, before signing of the final protocol, as per the shared schedule.