ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif is all set to leave today (Tuesday) for his three-day visit to Turkey over Turkish President Racep Tayyip Erdogan’s invitation. This will be PM Shehbaz Sharif’s maiden visit to Turkey since he assumed charge as the Pakistani premier.
A high-level delegation, including Minister for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb and Minister of Commerce Naveed Qamar and key members of the cabinet, are accompanying PM Shehbaz Sharif on his visit aimed at boosting friendly ties with Ankara.
Foreign Minister Bilawal-Bhutto — who is already in Turkey — will join the delegation in Ankara, while business community representatives will fly to Turkey on a commercial flight.
During the visit, the premier will have a one-on-one meeting with Erdogan which will be followed by delegation-level talks. The two leaders will also exchange views on regional and international issues, besides covering the entire gamut of bilateral relations.
On the sidelines of the visit, PM Shehbaz Sharif is scheduled to attend the Pakistan-Turkey Business Council Forum where he will interact with the Turkish businessmen and investors.
Moreover, the prime minister will have bilateral interaction with the Turkish leadership, with a particular focus on advancing economic, trade and investment ties.
Major deals between Pakistan and Turkey are likely on the visit.
The two friendly countries are celebrating the 75th anniversary of the establishment of their diplomatic relations this year.
It is pertinent to note that the last interaction between the leaders of the two countries came when the Turkish president called the Pakistani premier to congratulate him on his election as the prime minister.
In the phone call, Erdogan “wished that the election results would be beneficial for the friendly and brotherly people of Pakistan,” according to the Presidency’s Directorate of Communications.
Erdogan had said they closely follow developments in Pakistan, and Turkey is bound by a deep-rooted history, friendship and brotherhood.
PM Shehbaz has held two foreign trips this month to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), respectively, after assuming office on April 12, as he sought to strengthen bilateral ties with the oil-rich states.
During the visit, the Prime Minister will have one-on-one meeting with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan which would be followed by delegation-level talks.