Islamabad, Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi met the UAE’s Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence and Commissioner General of EXPO 2020 Dubai, His Excellency Sheikh Nahyan Mabarak Al Nahyan, today.
Acknowledging Sheikh Nahyan’s contributions to bilateral relations between the two countries, the Foreign Minister termed him as a ‘True Friend of Pakistan’. He appreciated the role played by Sheikh Nahyan in strengthening people to people linkages between the two countries, encouraging UAE’s investment in Pakistan and promoting the welfare and well-being of 1.6 million strong Pakistani Diaspora in the UAE.
The Foreign Minister discussed the prospects of enhancing bilateral cooperation, in particular in the fields of investment, tourism and related infrastructure and strengthening the bonds of amity between the peoples of the two countries. Lauding the solid foundation of the Pakistan-UAE friendship laid down by His Highness Late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the Foreign Minister stressed the need to nurture and further strengthen close bilateral ties. The two Ministers also exchanged views on the importance of tolerance and coexistence in presenting the true image of Islam and the Islamic society.
Foreign Minister Qureshi highlighted the positive role played by the Pakistani expatriates in the development of both countries. Thanking the UAE’s leadership for their considerate approach towards expatriates, the Foreign Minister briefed Sheikh Nahyan about the issues faced by the Pakistani community, in particular the restrictions on visa-related matters. He stressed the importance of resolving them at the earliest. Sheikh Nahyan acknowledged the positive contribution of the Pakistani expatriates to the UAE’s progress and agreed on the need to strengthen people to people linkages.
The two Minister exchanged views in detail on the EXPO 2020 Dubai. Lauding the one-of-its-kind mega event in the region, Foreign Minister Qureshi thanked the UAE’s support in setting up the Pakistan Pavilion in the EXPO. He discussed ideas regarding optimal utilization of the pavilion with a view to successfully showcasing Pakistan’s ‘Hidden Treasure’ – the theme of Pakistan’s pavilion in Dubai EXPO 2020. Sharing his initiative of holding a major event in the EXPO in October 2021, the Foreign Minister requested Sheikh Nahyan to grace the event, which was warmly accepted.
Sheikh Nahyan has played a key role in the well-being of Pakistani community in the UAE for decades. He is the patron-in-chief of Pakistan community schools in Abu Dhabi region. He is also a major investor in the banking and telecommunications sectors in Pakistan. In 2005, he was awarded ‘Hilal-e-Pakistan’ for his valuable contribution to Pakistan-UAE relations.