ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and Turkey have agreed to further strengthen their strategic relations in defense, economic, political, cultural and diplomatic fields. Addressing a joint press conference along with his Turkish counterpart Ali Babacan after their meeting in Islamabad Shah Mehmood Qureshi Saturday said that they exchanged views on a host of issues including bilateral relations and regional and global matters in their meeting.
He said the two sides had similar views on every issue and therefore shared their interests. Shah said, “Pakistan has suggested developing a strategic dialogue between the two countries at the foreign ministerial level and if we do so it will regularize and enhance our contacts and further improve our relations.” He thanked Turkey for its continued support on the Kashmir dispute and assured equally committed support on Cyprus issue by Pakistan.
He said economic and trade relations were also discussed and both sides acknowledged that they had very strong defense cooperation and we had been supporting each other on international forum. The Pakistan Foreign Minister said trade as well as economic ties between the two countries had improved in the last few years and decided to further upgrade it. He said the two countries had agreed to enhance the existing bilateral trade of 690 million dollars to one Billion dollars in the next two years.
The Foreign Minister said they discussed defense cooperation and agreed to further promote cooperation by considering co-production in Defense for mutual benefit and interest. To a question Shah Mehmood Qureshi said that they discussed significance of a joint working group and hoped that it will meet during next month.
He appreciated the role of Turkey in the tripartite summit and suggested that it may hold a tripartite meeting to further strengthen peace and stability in the region. Shah Mehmood Qureshi praised the Turkish President’s positive approach regarding Pakistan’s role played in Afghanistan and its stance during the NATO Summit in Bucharist.-SANA