The Australian High Commissioner to Pakistan, Dr Geoffrey Shaw marked Australia Day (26 January) with a special message. He said:
“Australia Day, when Australians celebrate our nation’s achievements and its people, is a wonderful opportunity to reflect on the relationship between our two great countries.
Australia was one of the first countries to formally recognise the new nation of Pakistan in 1947. Since then, the relationship has strengthened and deepened. We have much in common – including our shared love of cricket and historical ties – which provides a solid foundation to advance the relationship further.
Our strong linkages are shown by the more than 80,000 people of Pakistani origin who now call Australia home.
And many Pakistani students choose to study in Australia’s high quality universities and other educational institutions. These young alumni contribute to Pakistan’s bright future and build on their links with Australia.
Australia is a supporter of Pakistan’s prosperity, stability and development. In 2020, Australia has re-oriented its development cooperation to help Pakistan deal with the COVID19 emergency, such as by funding the purchase of ventilators, supporting Ehsaas nutrition centres and assisting women in lockdown.
This has been in addition to our long-running development cooperation to better manage scarce water resources, improve agricultural productivity and promote gender equality.
Growing trade and investment will be critical to the post-pandemic recovery. There is significant potential to unlock in our growing business relationship, particularly in education and agriculture. Australia also offers excellence in innovation, science and technology.
As Australia’s High Commissioner, I am confident that our two nations will continue to strengthen the positive relationship well into the future.