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Sharif embarks on visit to Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan


Islamabad: Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif today embarked on a three-day visit to Turkmenistan and Kyrgyzstan to boost cooperation in the energy and economic sectors with the resource-rich central Asian countries.

Sharif, accompanied by Cabinet Members and senior officials, will first land in Turkmenistan’s capital Ashgabat where he will hold talks with the top Turkmen leadership on a host of issues, including the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan- Pakistan-India (TAPI) pipeline project.

Agreements would also be signed for cooperation in different sectors like energy security, the Pakistan Foreign Office said in a statement.

Turkmenistan, while welcoming the visit of Prime Minister Sharif to Ashgabat, has underlined the significance of this visit for the promotion of bilateral relations between the two countries, it said.

During the visit, Sharif will call on President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov and then delegation-level talks will be held.

“The main focus of the meeting would be to review the whole range of bilateral relations, including TAPI Gas pipeline project and energy security, economy, trade and commerce, education, defence, science and technology, culture and regional as well as global issues of mutual concern,” the Foreign Office said.

Tomorrow, the Prime Minister will visit Bishkek and hold meeting with the Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambaev.

During the delegation-level talks, the two sides will discuss issues of mutual cooperation in various fields.

Agreements are likely to be signed in the economic sphere.

Pakistan is keen on further strengthening its ties with Central Asian countries in all fields especially energy security and connectivity.

Consistent efforts are underway to give a central thrust to trade, economic and investment dimensions to ties with the Central Asian countries, the Foreign Office said.

“The cooperation among Pakistan, Turkmenistan and Kyrgyzstan is important for energy security and stability in the region to enable gas and oil pipelines, electricity transmission, air and road connectivity and trade,” it said.

Sharif’s visit will provide an opportunity to further strengthen bilateral cooperation in diverse fields, it added.

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