ISLAMABAD: Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser on Thursday chaired the meeting of Afghanistan Inter Ministerial Coordination Cell (AICC) and was informed that a delegation of high-ranking officials would soon visit Afghanistan for further engagement with Afghan government on all assistance-related prospects. National Security Adviser and Convener of AICC Dr Moeed Yusuf welcomed the Speaker and made a detailed presentation about AICC and the progress made so far on various initiatives undertaken by the forum to facilitate the process of humanitarian assistance for the people of Afghanistan, said a news release. Speaking on the occasion, the Speaker National Assembly appreciated AICC for the well-coordinated efforts for helping the neighboring country in dealing with the crisis. He stressed that the world must not abandon people of Afghanistan in their time of need. “Peace and stability in Afghanistan offered enormous opportunities not only to the Afghan people but also to Pakistan in terms of access to Central Asian countries for greater trade and connectivity,” Asad Qaiser said. The Speaker was informed that Rs5 billion assistance package announced by the Prime Minister of Pakistan included immediate supply of food commodities, life saving drugs and winter supplies and shelter including tents and blankets. The NSA also elaborated the process of issuance of visas to international non government organisations (INGO) wanting to work for humanitarian assistance as well as medical, and business. The Forum was informed that special dispensation was now in place for any INGO willing to support Afghanistan’s humanitarian assistance efforts from Pakistan. Similarly, facilitation was offered to stranded patients for their return to Afghanistan, it added. It was informed that a proposal for grant of long term residency to foreign investors was being formalized for final approval by the Prime Minister. Similarly, modalities were being worked out for commencement of bus service between Peshawar – Jalalabad and Quetta – Kandhar. The meeting was also attended by Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) Shahzad Arbab, and Special Representative for Afghanistan Muhammad Sadiq Khan along with senior govt officials. It was mentioned that a senior delegation of Pakistani officials headed by the National Security Adviser is scheduled to visit Afghanistan soon.