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Articles

Pakistan and Djibouti Cementing Mutual Ties

Pakistan is eying to benefit from renewable energy especially in the fields of geothermal energy, wind, and solar power and boost economic as well as the commercial relationship with Djibouti, which is an important geostrategic location.

To cement the relationship and find a delegation of Pakistani parliamentarian visited Djibouti. Members of the delegation talking to The Truth International said Pakistan considers Djibouti’s location, a strategically important route to both global trade and regional security. Further that the country is positioned next to Bab-el-Mandeb, the strait that links the Indian Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea via the Red Sea, the Suez Canal and the Gulf of Aden.

Highlighting the importance of African country delegation members further stated that The port connects to the juncture of sea and land routes between the Far East, the Arab-Persian Gulf, Africa, Europe, and the East Coast of the United States, hence holding vital importance to the world economy. Average of 20 K ships or 20 percent of global exports, pass through the port on route to their final destinations, opined Pakistani parliamentarians.

One of the delegation member Senator Muhammad Saif Ali said “We want to utilize Djibouti’s prime geostrategic location and its modern development infrastructure. We are all the more convinced that the partnerships that we are considering in Djibouti will lead to success, as our two nations share many heritages.”

During the visit The President of the Djibouti Republic, Ismail Omer Guelleh welcomed the Pakistani delegation led by the Secretary-General of the International Congress of the parliament, Muhammad Ali Saif, at the palace of the Republic, in January 2021. From Djibouti, Mr Mohamed Ismail Youssouf, Member of the National Assembly, and the Secretary-General of the Presidency Mohamed Abdillahi Wais took part in several meetings with delegation.

The representatives from Pakistan included Senator Mirza Muhammad Afridi, Chairman of the Standing Senate Committee on Trade and of the Policy Council, Fayaz Thaheem of the International Parliamentarians Congress, and some Pakistani businessmen, especially Imran Muhammad Ilyas, Djibouti based Pakistani businessman.

Djibouti’s overall population is slightly less than one million people with a 94% Muslim population. Despite the small physical and economic size of Djibouti, it holds great significance to global trade and military security. The country’s political stability and strategic location have been attracting foreign military bases from developed nations like the US, Japan, and several other EU countries. In 2016, China announced its first permanent overseas deployment in Djibouti. It is also predicted that the country can easily be transformed into the Dubai of Africa.

Muhammad Ali Saif, while talking to the press in Djibouti mentioned Pakistan’s ever-growing interest in the prospects of investments in Djibouti.

He said, “We want to utilize Djibouti’s prime geostrategic location and its modern development infrastructure. We are all the more convinced that the partnerships that we are considering in Djibouti will lead to success, as our two nations share many heritages.”

The distinguished delegation also had the honour of meeting with the Minister of Energy in Djibouti, Yonis Ali Guedi, on the premises of the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources (MERN) located in the ministerial city. Djibouti is one of those countries that is ambitious to use 100% green energy by 2035 which is one of the biggest reasons along with the country’s geostrategic position that attracts many international investors.

Pakistani delegation also had been observant on identifying the economic and commercial opportunities that Djibouti has to offer, particularly in the energy and mining fields.

The Minister of Energy and Natural Resources in the presence of several Djiboutian parliamentarians and Pakistani

Moreover, the Pakistani representatives met with the Budget Minister, Naval Chief, Coastguard Chief, and various Minis- ters including Member of Parliament.

This visit of Pakistani delegates stems from an invitation from the President of the Djibouti Assembly, Mohamed Ali Houmed, who visited Pakistan at the end of December 2020.

During the visit, Mohamed Ali Houmed was offered a position of the President of International Parliamentary Congress (IPC), which he accepted wholeheartedly. As a goodwill gesture, Pakistan presented rice bags for the people of Djibouti as a gift from Inter Services Public Relations Pakistan (ISPR).

Furthermore, Senator Mirza Afridi has been appointed the Honorary Council General of Djibouti in Pakistan by Djibou- ti’s government. Overall, the Pakistani delegation considers this visit a great success and a significant step towards strengthening diplomatic relations.

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