ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, at the 50th Foundation Day of the Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI), has said that the world today is beset by the inter-locking food, fuel, financial crises and the existential threat of climate change.
He said that the most distinguishing feature of our times is the intensifying great-power contestation – which has in its wake the potential to divide the world, undermine the prospects of international collaboration to tackle global challenges, and even evoke major-power conflict, if the current trends are not checked and reversed, we might end up losing the world itself. He said seeking to preserve the current world order, Pakistan’s foreign policy therefore, must be imaginative, multi-dimensional, and flexible enough to adapt to the rapidly transforming geo-political landscape across the globe.
Addressing the event Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that when the Government assumed Office in April 2022, it faced serious challenges on the diplomatic front. Despite that, we diligently pursued a foreign policy aimed at addressing our national challenges, opening doors for our people, improving access of our goods and services, preserving sovereign decision-making at multilateral fora and promoting multilateralism and international law while amplifying Pakistan’s viewpoint at the regional and global level. He said that addressing our domestic issues required quick rebuilding of ties and restoring trust with key capitals and reinvigorating substantive engagement with our traditional partners, Pakistan is committed to forging good relations with all major powers beyond the US and China, this includes Russia, Europe and Japan as well as ASEAN and the Republic of Korea.
He said that we reinforced and deepened our traditional partnerships with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Türkiye, Iran, and Qatar and we see a positive trend in Pakistan-Africa bilateral linkages in terms of trade, political, parliamentary, and military & security Cooperation.
Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that Pakistan has clearly voiced its opposition to any bloc politics or relapse into the Cold War, forging military alliances and assigning the role of ‘net security provider’ to some countries at the expense of others is fraught with grave consequences. He said that in our view, the main driver for international relations should be cooperation, not confrontation, there is everything to be gained from economic inter-dependence and peaceful coexistence?
He said that the All-weather Strategic Cooperative Partnership between Pakistan and China has been enduring and mutually-beneficial over several decades, China remains a steadfast and reliable partner, and our bilateral ties continue to strengthen across myriad fields. He said Pakistan is fully committed to ensuring the success of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the China Pakistan Economic Corridor’s extension to Afghanistan and further West would help significantly advance our agenda of connectivity and economic integration.
Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that as a friend of both Russia and Ukraine, we hope that there will be move towards peaceful resolution of the ongoing conflict through dialogue and diplomacy and we earnestly hope the current drift would be reversed and a beginning would be made towards addressing mutual concerns and building sustainable peace in Europe again.