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Friday, July 30, 2021

EU extends invitation to PM Imran Khan for state go to

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Prime Minister Imran Khan. — Reuters/File
Prime Minister Imran Khan. — Reuters/File
  • After 11 lengthy years, a Pakistani head of state will go to the EU.
  • Invitation signifies that the EU has chosen to retain its coverage of engagement regardless of many variations on nationwide and worldwide points.
  • Pakistan should totally implement 27 conventions hooked up to the GSP plus settlement, says EU.

BRUSSELS: Joseph Borrell, Excessive Consultant of European Union and Vice President of European Fee, in a bilateral assembly with Overseas Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Friday, on the sidelines of the Antalya Diplomacy Discussion board, invited Prime Minster Imran Khan to go to the European Union.

It was final in March 2010 when a Pakistani head of state, the then prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, had been invited to go to the European Union.

A 12 months prior, the primary state-level summit within the historical past of Pak-EU relations, the European Union-Pakistan summit, befell on June 17, 2009, when Asif Ali Zardari was president.

The second summit was held on June 4, 2010, throughout prime minster Gilani’s rule.

That very same 12 months, a gathering in Brussels of the Associates of Democratic Pakistan befell in October.

Prime Minister Imran Khan visited the European Parliament in 2007, not in an official capability, however as a political chief, invited by then member of European Parliament Dr Sajjad Karim and the president of Associates of Democratic Pakistan group within the European parliament.

Within the historical past of EU-Pakistan relations, the PPP period was a time when relations between EU and Pakistan have been at their peak.

The 2008-2018 interval was a golden period as a result of it resulted in a number of helpful agreements for Pakistan: the 5-year Strategic Engagement Plan, the GSP Plus regime, and the 10-year duty-free scheme for Pakistan’s exports to the European Union.

With such offers, Pakistan obtained large assist in financial exercise, exports, schooling, and rural growth underneath EU-run programmes. The cordial relationship of Pakistan with EU boosted the nation’s picture in European international locations.

Nevertheless, since 2018, Pakistan couldn’t handle to safe any commerce agreements or concessions from the EU.

Pakistan’s final engagement plan was signed in 2012, after the Associates of Democratic Pakistan Discussion board’s 2011 convention. There have been plans to kick up relations a notch to a full strategic partnership stage however Pakistan did not qualify for the phrases of the Pak-EU Strategic Partnership Settlement twice.

In 2019, Pakistan was given one other probability and the association was prolonged underneath a brand new title, the Strategic Engagement Dialogue.

EU’s Strategic Engagement Plan ushered in new period of strong cooperation: FM Qureshi

The invitation to the Prime Minister of Pakistan signifies that the European Union has chosen to retain its coverage of engagement regardless of many variations on nationwide and worldwide points.

At a digital assembly on June 16 of the EU-Pakistan Joint Fee, the EU raised considerations about safety for the media and journalists and confused that Pakistan must abide by the phrases and situations of the EU-Pakistan agreements.

Joint efforts within the fields of democracy, governance, rule of regulation and human rights, moreover cooperation on human rights points at worldwide fora, and the promotion and safety of all elementary freedoms have been mentioned.

Each the EU and Pakistan reaffirmed their dedication to the promotion and safety of all human rights and elementary freedoms, together with freedom of faith and perception (considerations about anti-Muslim hatred), the rights of individuals belonging to minorities, freedom of expression, and girls’s rights and youngsters’s rights.

Pakistan knowledgeable the gathering about developments regarding the Journalist and Media Safety Invoice, the Compelled or Involuntary Disappearance Invoice and the Anti-Torture Legislation.

Then at this time, Overseas Minister Qureshi and EU Excessive Consultant Borrell held a bilateral assembly, on the sidelines of the Antalya Diplomacy Discussion board in Turkey, which included a dialogue of Pakistan’s optimistic position in Afghanistan.

In the meantime, right here in Brussels, the EU headquarters, an especially hostile setting prevails after the European Parliament’s close to unanimous decision in April asking for a evaluation of the nation’s GSP Plus (GSP+) standing with solely 3 votes in favour and 681 towards Pakistan.

EU parliament needs Pakistan’s GSP plus standing reviewed

In such a tumultuous time, for Ambassador of Pakistan to EU Zaheer Janjua and his group to have obtained an invite to EU for Pakistan’s premier is considerable.

The go to will definitely present a possibility to PM Imran Khan to higher perceive the character and significance of relations with the EU.

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