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Chancellor Angela Merkel invites PM Imran to visit Germany

F.P. Report

DAVOS: Prime Minister Imran Khan and German Chancellor Angela Merkel had in informal meeting on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum (WEF) 2020.

During the meeting, Angela Merkel invited PM Imran Khan to visit the Germany, which he accepted.

Earlier today, speaking at a ceremony of breakfast in Davos, the prime minister said that time has taught him how to calmly deal with the difficult situations, adding that several people get disappointed when they encounter with any tough moment but the human being should always be hopeful of good times.

Looking behind your past would greatly affect your victory as there is no Plan B when you are determined to be successful, he added.

The premier hoped that Pakistan will be developed under good governance. My vision is to turn Pakistan into a welfare state as envisioned by the founding fathers, he asserted.

Imran Khan said present government is spending money to revive industries by encouraging and giving them incentives. We want to promote industrialization as it will create wealth which will help spend money on the poor segments of the society, he went on to say.

The premier informed the audience that we have launched the country s largest and most comprehensive poverty alleviation program Ehsaas, for which 190 billion rupees has been allocated.

Referring to the challenges faced by the country including corruption, high debt and degeneration of institutions, the Prime Minister said his first year in power has remained remarkable despite harsh situation.

On Wednesday, PM Imran Khan met many world leaders on the sideline of the World Economic Forum (WEF) summit where he underscored the need to foster mutual cooperation, and also highlighted the need to spread Pakistan’s positive image through digital platforms.

President of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Kristalina Georgieva and President of Asian Development Bank (ADB) Masatsugu Asakawa called on Prime Minister Imran Khan in Davos, Switzerland on the sidelines of the annual meeting of WEF 2020.

Advisor to the Prime Minister on Finance Dr. Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Special Assistant to PM Syed Zulfiqar Abbas Bukhari, Ambassador at Large on Investments Ali Jehangir Siddiqui, Governor State Bank of Pakistan Raza Baqir were also present. The meeting discussed economic and issues and development.

PM Imran meets Singaporean counterpart

Prime Minister Imran Khan met with Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Hsien Loong in Davos on Tuesday, on the sidelines of World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2020, Dunya News reported.

Bilateral relations and ways and means to strengthen economic ties were discussed during the meeting.

Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Advisor on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Advisor on Commerce Abdul Razaq Dawood, Pakistan’s Permanent Representative to UN at Geneva Ambassador Khalil Hashmi and senior officials were also present.

PM Imran calls on Azerbaijan President

Prime Minister Imran Khan also called on President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev on Tuesday, on the sidelines of World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos.

Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mehmood Qureshi and Permamnent Representative to UN at Geneva Ambassador Khalil Hashmi were also present on the occasion.

Bilateral relations and ways and means to strengthen economic ties were discussed during the meeting.

PM Imran invites SAP to support ‘Digital Pakistan’

Prime Minister Imran Khan invited SAP (System, Applications and Product), a software solution company of international acclaim, to support ‘Digital Pakistan’ initiative in skills development and training of youths in collaboration with major universities in Pakistan.

In a meeting with SAP Chief Executive Officer Christian Klein on the sidelines of World Economic Forum (WEF) at the Swiss resort Davos, the prime minister expressed desire for establishing SAP laboratories in Pakistan for promotion of software engineering, a PM Office statement said issued.

SAP (System, Applications and Product) is one of the world’s largest enterprise software companies, known for their Enterprise Resource Planning Software with a significant footprint in the public and private sector of Pakistan.

Khan said his government was utilising digital applications for governance including citizen’s complaint redressal, for procedural efficiency at public offices and for improving ease-of-doing-business.

Klein apprised the Prime Minister that SAP had a long association with Pakistan since last 20 years with its most significant project the digital system for administering salaries and pensions of the Government of Pakistan.

He appreciated Pakistan’s focus on digitisation of governance and economic sectors and e expressed SAP’s commitment to train young software engineers in Germany and using them for software development in Pakistan.

The meeting was attended by Finance Adviser Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Commerce Adviser Abdul Razaq Dawood, PM’s Special Assistants Syed Zulfiqar Abbas Bokhari and Dr. Moeed Yusuf, and Ambassador at Large on Foreign Investment Ali Jehangir Siddiqui.

PM Imran meets Siemens CEO

The premier met Siemens AG CEO Joe Kaeser to discuss technology transfer, investment and cooperation in the IT sector. Siemens AG is a German multinational conglomerate company headquartered in Munich and the largest industrial manufacturing company in Europe with branch offices abroad.

PM Imran discusses promotion of Pakistan‘s sector with YouTube chief

Ms Susan Wojcicki, the CEO of YouTube called on Prime Minister on the sidelines of WEF Annual Meeting 2020. Both discussed the promotion of Pakistan’s tourism sector, and investment through digital platforms.

A particular emphasis was placed on utilisation of digital platforms for the promotion of education, technology transfer, investment and skills enhancement cooperation. APM Syed Zulfiqar Abbas Bukhari and Ambassador at large on Investments Ali Jehangir Siddiqui, head of Digital Pakistan Tania Aidrus were also present during the exchange.

PM Imran affirms Pakistan’s role for peace in Afghanistan

Prime Minister Imran Khan, in his address to corporate leaders at the Pakistan Strategy Dialogue at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, recalled the “heavy cost” paid by Pakistan and the damage to society after participating in the war on terror after 9/11.

He stated that the first conflict left us with militant groups after the soviets left Afghanistan, and “culture of kalashnikovs and drugs we used to pay for the war and sectarian groups.”

He also pointed out to the war on terror that left us with 70,000 people dead, and “suicide attacks”.

Due to these reasons, the PM apprised the leaders that Pakistan was considered one of the most dangerous places in the world (to travel after the war on terror) when he came into power but his government had decided to partner with peace and not any conflict.

“Secondly, the legacy of 80s when we were left with these militant groups still operating in Pakistan, this was the first government that has disarmed them and tried to rehabilitate them. As a result, the first benefit Pakistan saw was in the field of tourism.”

“In terms of tourism, Pakistan is perhaps one of the most undiscovered countries in the world. It has one of the oldest civilisations, the Indus Valley [civilization] which is 5,000 years old, and has sacred places for four religions, (including) Hinduism, Budhism, Sikhism and then of course Sufism” he said.

“All of this potential was untapped that it has the one of the most undiscovered mountain areas, half of the world peaks over 24000 ft are in Pakistan.”

“So, the first impact was that tourism doubled in one year,” PM Khan said.

“We are one of the most tourism friendly countries and all this potential was untapped, especially the mountain areas,” he said.

“The first impact was that tourism recovered in a year […] we believe Pakistan can collect a lot of revenue from tourism.”

Top travelling bodies have named Pakistan as a top travelling destination. We believe that tourism has the potential to earn a lot of foreign exchange for Pakistan.”

“The second step was investment […] investment has grown by 200 percent, and the government is doing everything possible to attract investment and to give incentives to industries.”

“In the 60s, Pakistan was one of the fastest growing countries in terms of industrialisation. Unfortunately, we lost our way in the 70s which hampered our industrial growth,” he maintained.

He asserted that his government has “actively incentivising industries and investment, and have tried to remove all the hurdles in the way of investors.”

Regarding investment, he affirmed that “we have a young population that needs employment. We need investment to come in; both local and international […] we need re-industrializaiton.”

The premier referred to Pakistan’s position in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Index 2020 after jumping 28 places and attaining 108th rank from the earlier 136, and stated: “Pakistan was one of the top countries […] we jumped 28 places, off course a long way to go but this is the direction the country is headed.” (Pakistan secured a place among top ten global business climate improvers)

PM Imran said that the first year of his government was spent in stabilising the economy, and the country’s the current account deficit was brought down by 75 percent. “Now this year we need to focus on our economy to grow.”

“We have played a role in the conflict between Iran and Saudi Arabia to ensure that peace prevails.”

“We are also working actively with the Americans for peace in Afghanistan [where] there are good signs and a chance for a ceasefire. That is important as it will open an economic corridor for us to central Asia.

We are looking to attract investors in agriculture and mining. In addition, we are now moving towards a digital Pakistan and are inviting companies to invest in this endeavor, he maintained.

“With our agricultural economy, we are trying to attract investment in agriculture to increase yield and optimise use of water and resources […] we are also looking for investment in mining with the level of natural resources that Pakistan has.”

The PM further referred to the recent initiative of the state’s “Digital Pakistan”, and remarked “we are inviting foreign companies to come and invest in that […] we have a young Pakistani Tania Aidrus spearheading this.”

We have a young population and we are doing everything possible to accelerate this. This is the first time since the 60’s that our country is looking to go in this direction.”

Yesterday, PM Imran held bilateral meetings with the leaders of Singapore and Azerbaijan on the sidelines of the WEF.

According to an official statement issued by the Foreign Office, Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev and PM Imran discussed a whole spectrum of bilateral relations that are “marked by mutual trust and support”.

The prime minister will deliver a keynote address at the WEF special session today (Wednesday) at 7.45pm (PST).

According to the Foreign Office, the prime minister will speak to senior international media persons and editors during a session with the Forum’s international media council.

Trumps again offers mediation

Prime Minister Imran Khan met with United States President Donald Trump on the sidelines of World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos.

US President Trump said that it is an honour to meet PM Imran with whom he is going to discuss trade and many other issues. He emphasized on the trade and called it of “paramount importance”.

President Trump again offered to play the role of a mediator between Pakistan and India on the matter of Kashmir and said the US is keeping a “close watch” on the matter. “What’s going on between Pakistan and India … if we can help, we certainly will be willing to. We have been watching it very closely and it’s an honour to be here with my friend,” he added.

“The Pakistan-India conflict is a very big issue for us in Pakistan and we expect the US to always play its part in de-escalating the tensions, because no other country can,” PM Imran said, adding that he will continue to play his role for peace in the region.

Both leaders interacted in a highly cordial atmosphere with the press where Trump appreciated PM Imran, whom he referred to as his ‘friend’. PM Imran expressed that the matters pertaining to Afghan Peace Process, deteriorating situation in Kashmir and regional situation will be discussed as Pakistan has an important relation with the US.

Trump also underscored the relationship with Pakistan and expressed: “Never been this close as we are now”. Both leaders extended warmness towards each other and announced to pay heed to crucial issues.

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