Banquet Speech by the President

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                                                 Banquet Speech by the President

Your Excellency Dr. Goodluck Ebelle Jonathan, GCFR, the President and Commander – in- Chief of Armed Forces, Federal Republic of Nigeria,

Excellencies,

Distinguished Guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

At the very outset I would like to convey, on my own behalf and on behalf of my delegation, our deep appreciation for the very warm welcome extended to my delegation since our arrival in Abuja. The cordial hospitality accorded to us has made us feel at home. It is testimony to the fact that irrespective of the geographic distance, our hearts are very close to each other.

Excellency,

We in Pakistan deeply admire your sagacious leadership and the efforts your Excellency has made in forging the unity of West African nations within the framework of ECOWAS. Your Excellency’s role in African Union to support the cause of democracy, economic development, cultural freedom and the right to self-determination of the people all over, is commendable.

I would also like to avail myself of this opportunity to convey our heartiest felicitations to the people of Nigeria on the Centenary Celebrations to commemorate Unification of Nigeria.

Excellency,

We appreciate your agenda for transformation of Nigerian economy with a balanced growth in all sectors of economy and social uplift. We are looking forward to see Nigeria play its rightful role as Member of the United Nations Security Council during the Session 2014-15. Pakistan fully supports all efforts to reform the UN system making it more just and democratic.

I would also like to convey our heartfelt condolences to the members of bereaved families, victims of recent bomb blast in Abuja. We condemn terrorism and extremism in all its forms and manifestation. Pakistan is committed to fight against terrorism and extremism. This is a common menace that needs to be confronted jointly at bilateral, regional and international levels.

Excellency,

Pakistan and Nigeria share common aspirations of brotherhood, deep rooted in our cultural and historical bonds. Our two countries have closely cooperated with each other at various international and regional fora including the United Nations, Commonwealth of Nations, OIC and the D-8. All these forums provide good platform for further strengthening of cooperation between our two countries

Our two countries are endowed with tremendous material, economic and human resources which provide our great nations a very strong foundation for speedy economic growth and well being of our people. We complement each other. Pakistan stands committed to South-South Cooperation in all areas of economic, industrial and agricultural growth and this is opportune moment to foster these ties at all levels.

Excellency,

I would also like to convey our deep appreciation to Your Government for permitting the opening of Commercial Section of Pakistan Embassy in Lagos. This will greatly facilitate the promotion of our bilateral trade and investments.

Excellency,

Pakistan is desirous of sharing experience in agriculture, including agro-based industries, textiles, sports goods; education and defense production. Nigeria could benefit from our experience in oil and gas research, down-stream growth of petro-chemicals sector, laying of gas pipelines; transmission lines and reconstruction of other areas of power sector.

Pakistan has a booming textiles, garments, sports goods, pharmaceutical and dairy and poultry sectors. We would like to share experiences of our growth in these areas with Nigeria. Pakistani entrepreneurs are prepared to explore possibilities of joint ventures with their Nigerian counterparts.

I would like to encourage Nigerian businessmen and investors to take advantage of our liberal economic policies and special incentives we offer to foreign investors.

Excellency,

I would like to conclude with a prayer for peace, prosperity and economic well being of the great people of Nigeria.

May the friendship and fraternity among our two people, and two nations flourish always and achieve far greater heights of glory and prosperity, Ameen.

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