ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan will be paying a two-day official visit to Tajikistan on the invitation of President Emomali Rahmon of Tajikistan on 16-17 September 2021. The Prime Minister will be accompanied by a high-level Ministerial delegation.
This will be the third visit of the Prime Minister to Central Asia, underlining Pakistan’s enhanced engagement with the region.
The Prime Minister will participate in the 20th Shanghai Cooperation Organization Council of Heads of State (SCO-CHS) Summit in Dushanbe. He has earlier participated in SCO-CHS held in Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic on 13-14 June 2019 and SCO-CHS hosted by Russia on 10 November 2020 through video-conference.
SCO is an 8-member permanent inter-governmental trans-regional Organization. It was established in Shanghai on 15 June 2001. Pakistan became an SCO Observer in 2005 and a full member in June 2017 during Astana SCO-CHS Summit. Russia, China, India, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic and Tajikistan are other SCO members.
SCO also has 4 Observer states (Iran, Mongolia, Belarus and Afghanistan) and 6 Dialogue Partners (Azerbaijan, Armenia, Cambodia, Nepal, Turkey and Sri Lanka).
The Prime Minister will have bilateral meetings with other participating leaders on the sidelines.
After attending the SCO-CHS, the Prime Minister will have the bilateral segment of the visit. His talks with Tajik President will cover the entire gamut of bilateral relations, especially enhancing trade, economic and investment ties with a particular focus on regional connectivity. The two countries have earlier expressed strong commitment to enter into a formal strategic partnership.
The Prime Minister will also inaugurate the first meeting of Pakistan-Tajikistan Business Forum for which a group of Pakistani businessmen will also visit Dushanbe. The Joint Business Forum will catalyze growing trade and investment relations and promote business to business contacts between the trading communities of both sides. A meeting of Pakistan-Tajikistan Joint Business Council will also be held on the sidelines.
Pakistan and Tajikistan enjoy close brotherly relations underpinned by the bonds of common faith, history and culture. The two countries have shared perceptions and a common desire to promote economic development, peace, security and stability in the region.
The Prime Minister’s visit is part of Pakistan’s deepened engagement with Central Asia through ‘Vision Central Asia’ policy, having revitalized focus in five key areas of political ties, trade and investment, energy and connectivity, security and defence, and people-to-people contacts.