11th Session of Pakistan – Saudi Arabia Joint Ministerial Commission held

Islamabad, January 17, 2018 (PPI-OT):The 11th Session of Pakistan – Saudi Arabia Joint Ministerial Commission was held in Islamabad on January 16-17, 2018. The Session was Co-chaired by Mr. Mohammad Pervaiz Malik, Minister for Commerce and Textile and also Co-chair of Pakistan and Dr. Majid bin Abdullah Al Qasabi, Minister for Trade and Investment, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and also Co-chair of the Commission from Saudi side. During the two day Session, meetings were held between the experts of the two sides on a number of issues, especially focusing on Trade, Commerce, Energy, Consular Affairs, Education, Health and other matters of mutual interest.

During his stay in Pakistan, Dr. Majid bin Abdullah Al Qasabi Minister for Trade and Investment, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia called on President as well as Prime Minister of Pakistan. He also held meeting with the Minister for Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development on issues of bilateral interest. The closing session was held on January 17, 2018 and the Protocol of the Session was signed by both Co-chairs. The highlights of major decisions taken during the meetings of the 11th Session of Pakistan – Saudi Arabia Joint Ministerial Commission are as under:-

a) Both sides agreed to hold exhibitions of new products in each other’s countries. First single country exhibition of Pakistan in Saudi Arabia will be held in the second half of 2018. b) Both sides agreed to review and simplify the procedure of business visa issuance. The business visa fee will also be rationalized.

c) The Commission called for reactivating Pak-Saudi Joint Business Council (JBC) by first quarter of 2018 followed by the first meeting of the Council. d) A Commercial Attache will soon be designated in Saudi Embassy, Islamabad. e) Pakistani side stressed the importance of cooperation between Saudi oil and gas companies to develop oil production in Pakistan including setting up of refineries. f) Both sides agreed to expedite negotiations to finalize the MoU between Central Banks of two countries.

g) Both side will exchange and share security information and the expertise in the field of combating terrorism, organized crimes and money laundering. h) The Saudi side praised the Pakistani pilgrims. i) A draft Agreement on the Transfer of Sentenced Prisoners is likely to be signed at an early date. j) The Commission encouraged exchange visits of the officials from the media field, share television cultural programs and documentaries, facilitate the missions of the official radio and television delegations between the two countries.

k) The Saudi side informed that there is a Saudi Royal Decree to establish labour Attache in Pakistan and one of the mandate of this Attachee is to approve the labour training centers to train manpower in accordance with the Saudi requirements. l) It was agreed to encourage cooperation in the fields of scientific researches, exchange of scholarships and experiences in health teaching and medical staff and exchange of student visits. m) The Pakistani side requested increasing scholarships for Pakistani students studying in Saudi universities.

n) There will be cooperation in science and technology and exchange of research expertise. o) Pakistan offered Saudi Civil Aviation training courses at Civil Aviation Training Institute, Hyderabad in the field of air traffic control, communication, navigation and surveillance engineering and aviation management. p) Saudi Ministry of Health wishes will continue the cooperation in the field of recruiting qualified and trained Pakistani medical personnel to work in the Kingdom focusing on consultants, specialist and nurses in critical healthcare. q) For focused and regular sectoral liaison, both sides agreed to nominate the Focal Persons from both sides for cooperation in the fields of trade, energy, investment, education, agriculture, etc.

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