3 июня с.г. Генконсульство Российской Федерации в Карачи организовало пресс-конференцию и прием для пакистанских журналистов по случаю 66-й годовщины установления дипломатических отношений между Россией и Пакистаном и Дня России. Выступая перед представителями пакистанских СМИ, генеральный консул О.Н.Авдеев сделал обзор текущего состояния российско-пакистанских отношений и ответил на вопросы журналистов по двусторонней проблематике внешней политики России.
Russia-Pakistan relationship: towards new horizons
On the 12th of June celebrate the Day of Russia. This event is not only to mark the National Day. We also celebrate the decades-old relations between Russia and Pakistan which is increasingly gaining importance in the present-day world.
The relationship between any two countries has a very complex fabric. It is an interweaving of mutually accepted ideas, historical memory and facts, commitments, agreements and cultural contacts. In totality they constitute a particular framework in which bilateral ties expand and flourish. From time to time the relationship needs an impetus, most typically in the form of exchange of visits which very often prepare a ground for a breakthrough necessary for enhancing cooperation to a qualitatively new level. Building relationship is a gradual and continuous process and the incremental gains may take quite some time to become visible.
It is a well-known fact that Russia and Pakistan are the two countries which for many years have been diligently working on bettering their mutually beneficial ties which encompass quite a number of areas of mutual interest. The relationship between Russia and Pakistan which on May 1st, 2014 entered into its 67-th year is based on the universal principles of justice and mutual respect for each other’s legitimate interests. It is currently undergoing a meaningful transformation .
Similarity or identity of views on key global issues constitute the basis of Russia-Pakistan cooperation in various international and regional fora. It would not at all be an exaggeration to say this cooperation plays an important role in stabilizing the security situation in the region and has also become a perceptible factor in world politics. Close and fruitful interaction of our countries in the United Nations, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization and other regional bodies is a significant contribution to the ongoing process of creating a just multipolar world order.
An important aspect of our relationship are contacts between the lawmakers. Very recently there were two visits of Pakistani parliamentary delegations to Russia. The delegation headed by the Chairman of the Senate Mr.N. Hussain Bokhari went to Russia in April while delegation headed by the Speaker of the National Assembly Mr.S. Ayaz Sadiq paid a visit to Moscow in May. The visits reaffirmed the commitments of both the countries for broader cooperation between them and gave a fresh impulse to bilateral ties.
Trade and economy is another sphere which shapes and consolidates relationship. Suffice it to say that the Karachi Steel Mills which is the largest industrial enterprise in Pakistan, for decades has been the flagship of our bilateral cooperation. The Russian side is interested in getting contracts for the overhaul of this industrial giant to restore and further increase its capacity.
The trade between Russia and Pakistan needs more attention as its potential has not been utilized to the full extent. The volume of trade between the two countries shows a tendency for an increase but the rise so far has not been too impressive. During the contacts with the representatives of the Federation of Pakistani Chambers of Commerce and Industry as well as the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry the problems hindering the growth of Russia-Pakistan trade such as the lack of awareness about each other’s potential, absence of direct banking facilities etc. have been identified. These obstacles to better commercial ties are not insurmountable and now both the sides have to jointly strive for removing them.
Last October we witnessed an important event in the Russian-Pakistan bilateral exchanges. The representatives of three major Russian companies – “Gazprom EP International”, “RPM (Remputmash)” and “Saturn” - visited Karachi and Lahore to showcase their expertise and to establish business contacts with Pakistani partners. Those were reputed Russian companies, the biggest in their respective fields such as gas exploration, railway and power-generating equipment, which are the areas of vital importance for the Pakistan’s economy. These sectors obviously need a boost and therefore technological expertise of the Russian companies may come very useful. There are still some other areas, like coal and telecom, which require more interaction between the two countries but were not covered during that business visit. This will constitute future agenda for us to work at.
In all sincerity, events of this kind have been quite few in number. That is why there still remains a considerable gap in perceptions of both the sides regarding each other’s business potential. The presentation by the three companies filled that gap, if not completely but, no doubt, to a very considerable extent. It gave an excellent opportunity for Russian and Pakistani companies to establish channels of communication with each other in order to explore new avenues for cooperation. Enhanced interaction between the businessmen of our countries will definitely lead to higher level of awareness about each other’s potential.
The October visit of the Russian businessmen was just the beginning. Hopefully, it will lead to more frequent contacts between Russian and Pakistani partners which may ultimately translate into solid projects. In view of this the Russian side welcomes and supports the proposals made by the Russia-Pakistan Business Council to hold a single country exhibition on Russia in Karachi later this year and also to have a visit of the FPCCI’s delegation to Russia sometime in September, 2014.
The Russia-Pakistan interaction is not limited solely to the political and economic spheres. Last April a detachment of the Russian Pacific Fleet comprising a big anti-submarine ship “Marshal Shaposhnikov” and the rescue tug-ship “Alatau” called at the Karachi port on an unofficial visit. That was really a significant occasion in the history of bilateral relations as the previous visit of the Russian ships to the Pakistani port took place 49 years ago.
The picture of bilateral landscape would not be complete without mentioning the growing relationship between the port cities of Russia and Pakistan – St-Petersburg and Karachi respectively. Following the visit of the delegation from Karachi to the Russian Federation in October 2011 an Agreement on cooperation between the Government of St. Petersburg and the Government of Sindh has been prepared and is to be signed during the proposed visit of the Russian city’s delegation to Karachi. The Agreement will fix the twin city status of St. Petersburg and Karachi and open up new vistas of cooperation between them in various spheres of mutual interest such as culture, health care and social development, youth politics, sports and tourism.
This overview of the current status of the Russia-Pakistan relations as they are seen from Karachi reflects encouraging trends for the improvement of the entire gamut of our relationship. The recent increase in the frequency of bilateral developments has given a strong boost to our cooperation which obviously holds good promises for the future.
Генконсул делает обзор состояния российско-пакистанских отношений
Пакистанские журналисты на пресс-конференции
Беседа с журналистами
Генконсул слушает вопрос журналиста
Пакистанские журналисты и представители генконсульства