Visit of Pres­i­dent of the Ger­man Par­lia­ment Prof. Dr. Nor­bert Lam­mert to Pak­istan

The Diplomatic Insight - - News -

of the Ger­man par­lia­ment Prof Dr Nor­bert Lam­mert con­cluded his three-day visit to Pak­istan. Prof.Lam­mert, who is the sec­ond high­est rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Federal Repub­lic of Ger­many af­ter the Ger­man federal pres­i­dent, had come to Pak­istan on the in­vi­ta­tion of the Na­tional As­sem­bly Speaker Sar­dar Ayaz Sadiq. Dur­ing his stay in Pak­istan, he met Pres­i­dent Mam­noon Hus­sain, Min­is­ter for In­te­rior and Nar­cotics Con­trol Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, Min­is­ter for In­for­ma­tion Per­vaiz Rashid, and rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the Pak­istan-Ger­man Friend­ship Group of the Na­tional As­sem­bly. Prof Dr Nor­bert Lam­mert de­liv­ered a lec­ture on “Par­lia­ment, Po­lit­i­cal Bal­ance of Power” in Is­lam­abad, or­gan­ised by the Ger­man po­lit­i­cal foun­da­tion, Kon­rad Ade­nauer Stiftung (KAS) in col­lab­o­ra­tion with the Pak­istan In­sti­tute of Par­lia­men­tary Ser­vices (PIPS). He also met mem­bers of the civil so­ci­ety to dis­cuss the hu­man rights sit­u­a­tion in the coun­try. In his speech at PIPS, Prof Dr Nor­bert Lam­mert said that democ­racy means “giv­ing ev­ery­body an op­por­tu­nity to pur­sue his ideas but ex­pect­ing ev­ery­body to main­tain the rules”. He also said that Pak­istan had made re­mark­able con­sti­tu­tional amend­ments through con­sen­sus. Dr.Lam­mert also spoke on sim­i­lar­i­ties be­tween Ger­many and Pak­istan, be­sides re­gional, cul­tural and devel­op­men­tal dif­fer­ences. “Our con­sti­tu­tion also gives sym­bolic author­ity to the pres­i­dent, while the chan­cel­lor is strong in the sys­tem,” he said, adding that Ger­many, which is half the size of Pak­istan, with over 600 pub­lic rep­re­sen­ta­tives, has twice as many parliamentarians. Ear­lier, in a meet­ing Speaker Na­tional As­sem­bly Sar­dar Ayaz Sadiq and Dr Lam­mert agreed on en­hanc­ing par­lia­men­tary co­op­er­a­tion be­tween Na­tional As­sem­bly of Pak­istan and Ger­man Bun­destag. Both the lead­ers agreed that strength­en­ing of po­lit­i­cal in­sti­tu­tions and democ­racy were im­per­a­tive for de­vel­op­ment of any na­tion. Sar­dar Ayaz Sadiq said Pak­istan val­ued its friend­ship with Ger­many and de­sired to strengthen its par­lia­men­tary and eco­nomic co­op­er­a­tion. Dr Lam­mert praised the re­silience of Pak­istani na­tion which has gone through decades old in­sur­gency. He said that Ger­man Bun­destag would em­bark on a prag­matic and is­sue driven pro­gramme for en­hanc­ing co­op­er­a­tion be­tween both the par­lia­ments. “Peace and sta­bil­ity is im­per­a­tive for the progress and pros­per­ity in the re­gion,” he said. “This visit has helped me and my col­leagues to see the re­al­ity about Pak­istan,” he said as he agreed to en­hance eco­nomic co­op­er­a­tion in del­e­ga­tion, Pres­i­dent Mam­noon Hus­sain stressed the need for trans­form­ing the ex­ist­ing Pak­istanGer­man close bi­lat­eral equa­tion into a broad-based, com­pre­hen­sive and sub­stan­tive part­ner­ship with fo­cus on en­hanced trade, in­vest­ment and econ­omy. He said Pak­istan was keen to fur­ther en­hance its ties with Ger­many both at the bi­lat­eral level as well as in the con­text of the Euro­pean Union (EU). He ex­pressed the hope that the visit of Ger­man par­lia­men­tary del­e­ga­tion led by Dr Nor­bert Lam­mert would fur­ther strengthen bi­lat­eral ties, be­sides pro­mot­ing par­lia­mentto-par­lia­ment and people-to-people con­tacts be­tween the two coun­tries. The Pres­i­dent said parliamentarians from both the coun­tries had an im­por­tant role to play in strength­en­ing bi­lat­eral ties and stressed the need for fre­quent ex­change of bi­lat­eral par­lia­men­tary del­e­ga­tions. He said up­grad­ing of the ex­ist­ing Pak­istanGer­man Busi­ness Fo­rum (PGBF) to a full Cham­ber of Com­merce could help en­hance trade and in­vest­ment ties. Pak­istan had con­sti­tuted a Pak-Ger­man Friend­ship Group in its Par­lia­ment and the es­tab­lish­ment of sim­i­lar sep­a­rate Friend­ship Group for Pak­istan in the Ger­man Par­lia­ment would help strengthen bi­lat­eral par­lia­men­tary co­op­er­a­tion, he re­marked. On bi­lat­eral trade ties, the Pres­i­dent ex­pressed sat­is­fac­tion on the cur­rent vol­ume of the bal­ance of trade in Pak­istan’s fa­vor. The Pres­i­dent also ap­pre­ci­ated the strong and con­sis­tent sup­port of Ger­many to the grant of Gen­er­al­ized Sys­tem of Pref­er­ences ( GSP) Plus sta­tus to Pak­istan and said rig­or­ous steps were be­ing taken to mo­bi­lize the busi­ness com­mu­nity so as to take op­ti­mum ad­van­tage of the con­ces­sions of­fered by the EU. Dr Nor­bert Lam­mert was ac­com­pa­nied by mem­bers of the Ger­man Par­lia­ment, in­clud­ing Niels An­nen, Ms Marieluise Beck, Dr Hans- Peter Uhl and Am­bas­sador Dr Michael Koch, Spe­cial Rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Afghanistan and Pak­istan, Am­bas­sador of Ger­many to Pak­istan, Dr Cyrill Nunn. On his visit to La­hore, he was wel­comed by the imam of the Bad­shahi Mosque, Maulana Syed Muham­mad Ab­dul Khabir Azad, and met schol­ars of dif­fer­ent reli­gions. At the Sa­cred Heart Cathe­dral, he met Arch­bishop Se­bas­tian Fran­cis Shaw, rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the Catholic, and protes­tant churches to dis­cuss the sit­u­a­tion of the re­li­gious mi­nori­ties. Af­ter vis­it­ing the Na­tional Col­lege of Arts (NCA), the Ger­man del­e­ga­tion

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