ISLAMABAD: Pakistan is planning to import 1000MW electricity from Turkmenistan on a fast-track basis, said President Mamnoon Hussain.
While talking to Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov during a meeting at the President House, he said that the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline project would be a game changer with benefits for all the participating countries.
He said the groundbreaking ceremony for the project was a welcome development and Pakistan was looking forward to completion of the project by 2018. He said that Pak-Turkmen fraternal ties were based upon centuries-old historical and cultural affinities and emphasised that Pakistan-Turkmenistan friendship should pass on to the younger generations.
Hussain stressed that visa regimes should be relaxed to promote bilateral economic relations, people-to-people contacts, cultural cooperation and tourism. He asserted that Pakistan was committed to enhancing bilateral relations and cooperation in trade, energy, regional connectivity, infrastructure development, security and defence. He observed that Pakistan-Turkmenistan bilateral trade was currently below the potential and called for efforts to enhance the bilateral trade volume. He said that a greater interaction was needed between chambers of commerce and industry of the two countries.
The president emphasized that establishment of direct air, road and rail links between the two countries was pivotal to regional economic connectivity. “Pakistan is willing to help Turkmenistan improve its defence capabilities,” he added.
The president hoped that Turkmenistan would fully avail various training courses offered in Pakistan’s prestigious civil and military institutions. Hussain conferred an Honourary Degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Political Science on Berdimuhamedov. Federal Minister for Petroleum Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Minister of State for Communications Abdul Hakeem Baloch and Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Tariq Fatemi were also present.