Uzbekistan, Pakistan Herald New Era in Diplomatic Relations


Pakistani and Uzbek leaders announced a “new era” of strategic partnership in the realms of military and economic security.

Marking the 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries in March 2022, Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev and his Pakistani counterpart signed a series of agreements in Islamabad.

The two leaders led delegations that discussed bilateral relations in the fields of security, defense, trade and investment, regional connectivity, science and technology, culture, and education.

President Mirziyoyev shared his vision of the New Uzbekistan strategy that stresses greater outreach to South Asia. Pakistan returned the favor by highlighting its Vision Central Asia strategy.

The two countries signed memoranda of understanding as a first step toward the wider vision of integration. They agreed to continue providing humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan in the hopes of encouraging peace and stability in the region.

They also agreed to improve bilateral cooperation to “intensify dialogue and constructive cooperation between the armed forces of both countries.” That cooperation will include joint military exercises. 

“Pakistan values its relations with Uzbekistan, particularly defense cooperation,” Pakistani Chief of Army Staff Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa said.

Economic integration also topped the agenda. The Pakistani prime minister and Uzbek president expressed a desire to “fast track measures to further expand the connectivity agenda and economic integration.” 

Among the agreements was a deal for two new air connections: Tashkent to Lahore and Tashkent to Islamabad. Proposals to improve rail, power line and pipeline connectivity between the two countries have fallen afoul of Afghan instability.

Sources: Gulf News, Inter Service Public Relations (Pakistan)

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