Pakistan and GCC take historic step in enhanced comprehensive partnership
Pakistan and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) have formalized a comprehensive partnership, renewing their commitment to enhancing bilateral trade and fostering stronger business ties, marking a significant step in their diplomatic relations.
The genesis of this agreement can be traced back to a meeting between the Caretaker Foreign Minister, Jalil Abbas Jilani, and the GCC Secretary-General, Jasem Mohamed Albudaiwi. This pivotal encounter occurred on the sidelines of the 78th session of the UN General Assembly held in New York, where both parties came to a mutual understanding.
During this momentous meeting, the Caretaker Foreign Minister conveyed his contentment regarding the progress made in negotiations for the Pakistan-GCC Free Trade Agreement. He further emphasized the urgency of bringing these negotiations to a successful conclusion, recognizing the immense potential for economic cooperation.
In response, the GCC Secretary-General expressed his commitment to close collaboration in order to expedite the finalization of the Pakistan-GCC Free Trade Agreement. This commitment underlines the shared dedication to promoting trade between Pakistan and the GCC member states.
Beyond trade, the Foreign Minister stressed Pakistan's eagerness to strengthen institutional ties with the GCC and its member nations. This aligns with the Joint Action Plan for Strategic Dialogue, a testament to Pakistan's commitment to fostering robust diplomatic relations.
Lastly, the Foreign Minister proposed the possibility of hosting a GCC Foreign Ministers' Conference in Islamabad, a proposition originally put forth during the inaugural meeting of the Political Dialogue in March of the same year. This idea further signifies Pakistan's intent to deepen its ties with the GCC.
Furthermore, during the meeting, both parties engaged in discussions on regional and global issues of mutual interest. The Foreign Minister also took the opportunity to brief the GCC Secretary-General on the situation in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK), shedding light on the grave human rights violations perpetrated by Indian forces against innocent civilians in the region. This dialogue reflects the broader scope of their diplomatic relations, encompassing concerns beyond bilateral trade and cooperation.