President stresses enhancing quantum of bilateral trade with Ireland

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ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi on Monday underlined the need to bring a substantial increase to the quantum of bilateral trade between Pakistan and Ireland to realize the full potential of bilateral trade. Talking to Pakistan’s Ambassador-designate to Ireland Aisha Farooqui here at the Aiwan-e-Sadr, the president said that there were immense opportunities for the information technology-skilled youth and start-ups to secure online jobs in Ireland as more and more IT companies in Europe were shifting their headquarters to Ireland, which had been termed the ‘Silicon Valley of Europe’. The president expressed the hope that the ambassador-designate to Ireland would work towards further deepening Pakistan’s fruitful partnership with Ireland and expanding the mutually beneficial cooperation by taking meaningful steps. These steps, he said, may include an increasing level of bilateral engagements, catalyzing the flow of investment to Pakistan, creating online job opportunity for the IT skilled youth of Pakistan, increasing parliamentary exchanges, cementing people to people to contacts, and seeking better cooperation in agriculture and livestock. He said that Pakistan should focus on becoming an active partner in Quantum Computing research programs as quantum computers may take a few minutes or hours to solve complex scientific problems which supercomputers of today may take years to solve. The president termed the support of Ireland for Pakistan very important during the ongoing Fourth Biennial Review of GSP Plus and launching of the new GSP Scheme post-2023 which, he said, would require active engagements. He also termed the opening of the resident Embassy in Islamabad in October this year by the Irish government as a welcoming step and said that it would help in taking the mutually beneficial and friendly relations between the two countries to the next level. The president said that there was over 25,000 strong Pakistani diaspora in Ireland, which included Pakistani students and professionals, adding that higher education was an important area of bilateral cooperation and advised the ambassador-designate to make efforts to enhance cooperation in technical education and Irish scholarships for Pakistani students to study in the Irish universities. The President also asked the Ambassador-designate to highlight the human rights violations being committed by the Indian Occupation Forces in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK). He added that Jammu and Kashmir was an international dispute, and should be resolved as per the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council and in line with the aspirations of the Kashmiri people. He said that there was a need to sensitize the international community, particularly the United Nations and its human rights machinery, to take cognizance of the rapidly deteriorating situation of Islamophobia in India and hold India accountable for its failure in ensuring the security and well-being of its Muslim citizens.

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