Full membership of SCO to boost Pakistan’s image, economy

Efforts of the Prime Minister Nawaz

Sharif must be lauded which has resulted in full membership of

Pakistan in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).

The SCO will not only give Pakistan a powerful platform to

promote its economy, but it will also help our voice to be heard

more clearly on regional and international matters, said former

President of FPCCI Shahid Rasheed Butt.

Now Pakistan will be better equipped to ensure peace, build

trust, spur economic development, combat terrorism, reduce arms

race, eliminate poverty, deal with natural disasters, tackle climate

change and assure water security, he added.

He said that expansion of the SCO has taken place at a time

when China’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ (OBOR) initiative has transformed

the global economic landscape.

He also lauded the move of the PM Nawaz to use the opportunity

to meet Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on the side-lines of the SCO

moot in Astana. Both the leaders have agreed to combat terrorism

which is a positive development, he added.

Tensions between Pakistan and Afghanistan frequently hit

bilateral relations trade which is damaging both countries, he said.

Shahid Rasheed Butt said that both the brotherly Islamic

countries should resolve this issue amicably as Pakistan plans to

import 1300 megawatt electricity from central Asia through

Afghanistan which will cost it 5 cents per KWH while Afghan

government will get 1.25 cents per KWH as transit fee.

Similarly, Pakistan plans to import gas from Turkmenistan

which will be added to the national gas grid in Quetta for which

friendly relations with Kabul are imperative.

Afghanistan is full of mineral, iron ore and coal which can be

transported to Fata or Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for value addition. A big

steel mill can be established in northern Pakistan for the purpose

which can provide jobs and earn foreign exchange.

The ongoing projects will bring Pakistan, Afghanistan,

Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan closer and make them

interdependent with every country wanting stability in the partner


Source: Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage.