ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister (PM) Shehbaz Sharif has invited Swiss companies to invest in Pakistan, particularly in the renewable energy and information technology sectors, ARY News reported.
The prime minister extended the invitation while talking to Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Swiss Confederation, Federal Councillor Ignazio Cassis in Islamabad.
The Swiss foreign minister, accompanied by three members of the Parliament, is on a bilateral visit to Pakistan from 7-9 July at the invitation of the prime minister, PM Office Media Wing said in a press release.
Speaking on the occasion, PM Shehbaz reiterated the high importance Pakistan attached to its relations with Switzerland which were based on shared belief in fundamental principles of democracy and the rule of law.
Both sides reaffirmed their commitment to further enhance bilateral ties, especially in the areas of climate change, trade and investment, development cooperation, higher education and vocational training.
The prime minister thanked the Swiss government for providing support to Pakistan in the aftermath of last year’s devastating floods.
He also appreciated the Swiss businesses’ approach to the resolution of issues and their work ethic, and invited more Swiss companies to invest in Pakistan, particularly in the renewable energy and IT sectors.
The two sides also agreed to collaborate in tourism promotion including eco-tourism and development of related infrastructure using both the G2G and B2B channels. In this regard, it was agreed that a meeting would be convened shortly to further spell out modes of cooperation.
Both sides also agreed on disaster management, early warning and carbon market collaboration. The prime minister also witnessed the signing of an MoU on “Disaster Management” between Pakistan and Switzerland.
The MoU envisages bilateral cooperation in disaster risk management including preparedness, response and recovery aimed at reducing the adverse impact on the people and the economy.
Minister for Climate Change Sherry Rehman made a detailed presentation on the country’s climate vulnerability and onset of an accelerated climate crisis pushing the country into a recovery-resilience trap.
The minister explained that the adaptation costs were very high but Pakistan was rebuilding as much as it could.
She presented Pakistan’s flagship program including living Indus initiative and Delta Blue Carbon project which would resume 350000 hectares of mangrove wetlands reducing 147 million metric tonnes of carbon and bringing revenues of US$ 250million.
“Pakistan and the Swiss Confederation enjoy cordial relations grounded in cooperation at the international forums with the common aim to contribute towards global peace and prosperity,” the press release further added.
This is the first bilateral visit to Pakistan by a Swiss foreign minister in the last 17 years. The visit of Councillor Cassis has helped reinforce the existing friendly ties between the two countries.