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Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Putin calls Pakistan ‘priority partner’ in Asia

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Samarkand: Russian President Vladimir Putin called Pakistan a “priority partner” in Asia and said that gas supplies to Pakistan are possible with part of the necessary infrastructure already in place.

Putin held a meeting with Pakistan Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif on the sidelines of the SCO Summit.

“I would like to note that we see Pakistan as a priority partner in Southeast Asia and Asia as a whole. Relations between our countries are developing absolutely positively, and we are pleased about that,” said Putin to Sharif according to a Kremlin readout.

Putin said that there are very interesting and large-scale projects, namely the Pakistan Stream gas pipeline project, which involves building the infrastructure needed for the delivery of LNG.

“The objective is to deliver pipeline gas from Russia to Pakistan. This is possible as well, in view of the fact that some infrastructure is already in place in Russia, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan,” the Russian President said.

“We need to settle the Afghan issue. There are problems with political stability there, but I hope this problem can be settled as well, because we have good relations with the people of Afghanistan,” added Putin.

Putin said that regrettably the trade between Russia and Pakistan has subsided somewhat because of the pandemic.

“But the next meeting of the intergovernmental commission is scheduled to take place in Karachi this autumn. I hope that our colleagues on both sides will not only find ways to restore mutual trade but also to increase it,” he said.

In response, Pakistan Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif said that Pakistan want to build relations because Russia is a superpower.

“Your Excellency, we want to build our relations with your great country with full commitment and full dedication, because you are a superpower,” said Sharif.

“I have come here with my delegation with this proposal for your kind consideration, Mr President. We need to further cement our relations. We need to further build our relations in the field of energy, in the field of trade, in the field of investment and of course other strategic areas,” the Pakistan Prime Minister added.

Shahbaz Sharif said told Putin that “You are a man of action. You decide, and then you implement.”

I want to assure you that I want to work closely with you for our mutual benefit, Sharif added.

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