Press Trust of india

Pak Fin Min calls for ‘out of the box’ solutions to boost trade, economic coop with India

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Islamabad, Dec 04:  Pakistan on Tuesday said it will continue to take Kartarpur Corridor-like initiatives as an “out of the box” solution to increase trade and economic cooperation with India amid tension between the two neighbours.

Speaking at the 11th South Asia Economic Summit (SAES) at the Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) here, Pakistan’s Finance Minister Asad Umar said that intra-regional trade was of vital importance to bring the people out of poverty and attain the goals of progress and prosperity.

He asserted that the government will continue to take Kartarpur Corridor-like initiatives in order to promote the message of peace and prosperity.

He said India’s reaction about the Pakistan’s goodwill gesture to open Kartarpur Corridor was unfortunate.

On November 28, Prime Minister Imran Khan laid the foundation stone of the Kartarpur Corridor.

On November 26, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu and Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh laid the foundation stone for the Kartarpur Sahib corridor in Gurdaspur.

“We really need to think out of the box solutions for regional cooperation amid tensions and confrontations between the two states,” Umar said.

“It is our inability that we failed to get people of the region out of poverty. It is a real opportunity for those political leaders, who believe in a peaceful and prosperous South Asia,” he said.

The minister also said that Pakistan was still pinning hopes to strengthen the SAARC cooperation in the future.

Highlighting the government’s role in promoting cross regional energy transfer and inter-regional trade, Umar said channelisation of non-political forums to build political space for policy making is required for an effective cooperation among South Asian states.

The much-awaited corridor will connect Darbar Sahib in Pakistan’s Kartarpur – the final resting place of Sikh faith’s founder Guru Nanak Dev – with Dera Baba Nanak shrine in India’s Gurdaspur district and facilitate visa-free movement of Indian Sikh pilgrims, who will have to just obtain a permit to visit Kartarpur Sahib, which was established in 1522 by Guru Nanak Dev.

The corridor is expected to be completed within six months.

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