CPEC to further enhance growing Pak-Iran relations

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ISLAMABAD: The Ambassador of Pakistan to Iran Asif Durrani has said that the successful completion of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) would further boost Pakistan-Iran cooperation as a transit hub for the region.

He said this during a reception to commemorate the 78th Pakistan’s National Day in Tehran, said a message received here on Wednesday.

Highlighting the myriad challenges that Pakistan faced in recent years, Ambassador Durrani said that Pakistan has sacrificed more than 70,000 of its citizens including armed forces personnel and law enforcement agencies in fighting terrorists and has succeeded in defeating terrorism on its soil.

He said, “Today, there are no safe havens for terrorists on our soil”. Now, Pakistan is on the path of economic progress, it is rated as the most progressive emerging market with GDP growth of 6 per cent this year and projection of 6.5 percent in the coming year, the ambassador said.

Ambassador Durrani lauded the bilateral relations between Pakistan and Iran which are getting stronger by the day and said that both countries have displayed exemplary cooperation on many regional and international issues. With 35 per cent increase in bilateral trade since last year, the ambassador expressed hope of attaining $5 billion mark of bilateral trade in the next three years.

Iran’s Interior Minister Fazli, in his speech, extended felicitations to the Government and people of Pakistan on Pakistan’s National Day and lauded commemorating of 70 years of history between Iran and Pakistan including cultural, civilisational, religious and historical relations.

The Iranian Interior Minister reiterated the interest of the Supreme Leader of Iran on the expansion and deepening relations with Pakistan and said that it has given further strength to these bonds, which has been followed by all the governments of Iran, especially the present govt of Rouhani.

Fazli hoped that opening of new border points between both the countries would enhance the potential of border markets and border security. The development of Gwadar and Chabahar ports, the signing of FTA and implementation of PTA, establishing banking channels between Pakistan and Iran would bring about economic prosperity for both the neighbours and the region.

At the end of the ceremony, Durrani, Fazli and the dignitaries cut a cake to mark Pakistan- Iran friendship.