Pakistan, Turkey to shore up strategic, economic ties

Pakistan and Turkey on Wednesday vowed to enhance their strategic and economic relations and agreed to take measures for eliminating terrorism.

The countries made the commitments during a one-on-one meeting between Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. They later made their pledge public during a joint press conference at Presidential Complex in Ankara.

On an invitation from Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Mr Erdogan agreed to visit Pakistan in September this year for talks on issues of mutual interests.

At a ceremony witnessed by Prime Minister Sharif and President Erdogan, the two sides signed six bilateral memoranda of understanding on public debt management, cooperation between credit guarantee institutions for SME financing, housing, public-private partnership models, especially in transportation and health, knowledge sharing in economic and social policy planning, and technical cooperation in highway engineering.

Delegation-level talks also took place in which Prime Minister Sharif and President Erdogan led their respective sides.

At the joint press conference, Prime Minister Sharif said: “Our relations embedded with cultural, economic, diplomatic and strategic ties will be enhanced in the days to come. In fact, Turkey is like our second home.”

He said this year the two sides were celebrating 75th anniversary of their bilateral relations which prospered under the dynamic leadership of President Erdogan. “I am very happy to announce that next high-level meeting between the two sides will be held in Islamabad in September,” he added.