ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Thursday reiterated the government’s commitment for merger of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.In a meeting with Governor Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) Iqbal Zafar Jhagra at the PM Office, the PM discussed the steps being taken for the mainstreaming of FATA. He said work was being done on fast-track basis to take required legal and administrative measures for this purpose.The prime minister said that wok on creating an enabling environment and taking required legal and administrative measures for the purpose was being done on fast track basis.Overall situation in the province and steps being taken for mainstreaming of FATA were discussed during the meeting. Developmental projects in the province also came under discussion.Separately, Ambassador of Japan to Pakistan Takashi Kurai called on Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi.The prime minister said that Pakistan regarded Japan as a close friend and a reliable economic partner. The prime minister highlighted the significant improvement in the economic and security environment of Pakistan and attributed it to the successful law enforcement operations against terrorist groups.Emphasising on bilateral relations, the prime minister said that Pakistan looked forward to greater level of cooperation between the two countries particularly in the areas of trade, investment, infrastructure, energy and people to people contact. The prime minister stated that Japan might consider a 3-4 year exception for Pakistani textiles under Temporary Tariff Measures to bring Pakistan at a par with its competitors which enjoy free access to Japanese market. The prime minister also welcomed companies from Japan to invest in Pakistan that would enhance the capacity of Pakistan industrial sector to produce value added goods.The ambassador of Japan appreciated Pakistan’s economic growth and stated that Pakistan’s perception particularly in Japan has changed to a business-friendly country. The ambassador further added that Japan gave importance to investment security, infrastructure and business friendly environment and in all three aspects Pakistan has achieved marked improvement.Separately, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Iran Mehdi Honardoost paid a courtesy call on the Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Thursday.During the meeting, the PM said that Pakistan attached high importance to its relations with the brotherly government and people of Iran. “Both countries enjoy close and cordial relations. This provides a basis for enhancing mutually beneficial trade and investment relations that will reflect the true potential of the two countries. The prime minister also expressed his satisfaction over frequent high level contacts between the two countries, recalling his meeting with Iranian President Dr Hassan Rouhani in New York,” he said. Published in Daily Times, October 13th 2017.