WASHINGTON: Ambassador Masood Khan on Sunday said Pakistan was being positioned as an economic and transit hub and a meeting point for positive global interests.“We are committed to make...
WASHINGTON: Ambassador Masood Khan on Sunday said Pakistan was being positioned as an economic and transit hub and a meeting point for positive global interests.
“We are committed to make Pakistan a beacon of peace and prosperity in the region,” said the country’s ambassador to the US.He was addressing the Flag Hoisting Ceremony on the occasion of 75th Independence Day of Pakistan, which was attended by senior officials of US State Department, friends of Pakistan from the US and a large number of Pakistani diaspora.
The ambassador hoisted the national flag with the tune of national anthem. Addressing the gathering, the ambassador paid homage to the sacrifices of our forefathers for their vision that ultimately resulted into creation of Pakistan. “Pakistan had a remarkable journey over the last 75 years. Despite external and internal challenges, Pakistan has moved forward to become a resilient nation,” observed the ambassador.
Elaborating future vision of the country, the ambassador said Pakistan’s unique geographic location, demographic dividend, democratic orientation, rich human and natural resources clearly put the country in a unique position to realise its vision.
The ambassador highlighted friendly ties with the United States and a robust partnership between the two countries in various critical sectors, including trade, investment, regional connectivity, energy cooperation, people-to-people ties, education and cultural exchanges.
“We have been partners in making peace, building peace and keeping peace. We will continue to work with the US for peace and prosperity in the region and beyond,” said the ambassador.
He said the people of Pakistan have always had tremendous cultural affinity for the US as our brightest young men and women aspire to study in the US colleges and universities through scholarship programmes, such as Fulbright. These Fulbright scholarships have contributed tremendously to Pakistan’s socio-economic progress, he added.
The ambassador also appreciated the role of dynamic and vibrant Pakistani-American community in the US and their valuable contributions to the US politics, culture and economy. “They are a bridge between the two countries,” remarked Masood Khan.
Elizabeth Horst, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the State Department, speaking on the occasion, said the founders of both the countries ‘envisioned an independent and democratic society’.
She reiterated that the United States has always viewed a strong, prosperous and democratic Pakistan as essential for the interests of both the countries. “We have fostered decades of collaboration between Pakistan and the United States. Among the challenges our two countries are jointly addressing are boosting trade development, the ongoing Covid-19, climate crisis, improving educational access and excellence and regional peace and stability,” Ms Horst said.
She especially highlighted robust partnership between the two countries in the education sector. Highlighting visit of 800 students to the US every year and a network of over 37,000 alumni, she said: “Every student is an ambassador and a champion for the advancement of our relations.”
Ms Elizabeth Horst also noted increasing trade and investment relationship between the two countries and said that the US-Pakistan trade increased last year by $200 million in the agriculture and energy sector. “There are many opportunities right now particularly in the digital economy,” she continued.
“We welcome Ambassador Khan to the State Department next month to inaugurate a new exhibition from the American Pakistan Foundation and National Museum of American Diplomacy celebrating our deepening educational linkage,” Ms Horst said.
Youth representatives and high achievers also spoke on the occasion. Ms Sania Alam, recipient of US President’s Lifetime Achievement Award and a coach for Speed Learning and Mind-Mapping, and Dr Qaisra Saeed, who scaled K-2 besides her other notable achievements, also addressed the gathering. Young interns, who have had the opportunity to work at the Pak Embassy in Washington, also shared their thoughts.
The children also presented national song, which was greatly applauded by the gathering. Ambassador Masood Khan, along with the US guests, also cut the cake to mark the 75th anniversary of Independence of Pakistan.