ISLAMABAD: Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) on National Security Division and Strategic Policy Planning, Dr Moeed Yusuf said the government wanted to pursue a bilateral relationship with the US not hyphenated or clouded by US interests in other regional countries rather based on mutual understanding.
The SAPM addressed a gathering of US policy makers at the Washington based think tank Wilson Center titled “US-Pakistan Relations in the Biden Era” a day after the Biden inauguration, said a statement.
“In the past, Pakistan was unfortunately seen by Afghanistan prism,” he added, emphasizing that the world had undergone immense transformation in the past four years and the new administration should look beyond Obama-era conversation to build a truly bilateral relationship with Pakistan.
He told the participants that now you were dealing with a different Pakistan; a Pakistan which was self-confident and whose formal vision was squarely based on economic security paradigm.
“Pakistan is talking about becoming a geo-economic melting pot that is ready to consolidate global positive interest in our territory. We are talking about providing the world with economic-bases, not military-bases,” he said.
Dr Moeed Yusuf while elaborating Pakistan’s vision said: “Our focus is connectivity and China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is an obvious example of it. This is the reason we desire peace and stability in Afghanistan for westward connectivity. Furthermore, we are looking for development partnerships.”
He noted that all Western multinational companies in Pakistan earned profits well above their global average, demonstrating that Pakistan remained a lucrative market for foreign companies.
“How about having US reprocessing zones? Expanding the reconstruction opportunity zones (ROZs)? Having US-China co-investments in regional connectivity?” “Pakistan of today is very different. Terrorism in Pakistan is negligible, we have turned the corner,” the SAPM stated.
While delving into regional peace, Dr. Moeed Yusuf said that we were dealing with a different India; an India which was intolerant, had serious internal tensions, had human rights concerns and was taking unilateral decision, including in IIOJK. India is destabilizing the region and becoming a liability on anyone dealing with it, including the US, he said.
SAPM Dr Moeed said that “we wish to achieve a peaceful region where international obligations are met by all countries”.
He also emphasized that the Biden administration and Pakistan could work closely on important global challenges such as climate change – a priority area for both the Biden administration and Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government. He also emphasized that there were opportunities for Pakistan to work with the US in regional diplomacy in Afghanistan, the Middle East and elsewhere to decrease global tensions and restore the multilateral system.