ISLAMABAD: Mr. Joao Paulo Sabido Costa, Charged’ Affairs of Portugal said that Portugal has developed multi-lateral relation with Pakistan in the recent years. There is great potential regarding investment, trade and partnerships. Talking for the “Diplomatic Hour” at the Covenant TV” he said that Portugal intend to keep on cooperating with Pakistan in many areas, namely those of social and economic development, as well as while consolidating Rule of Law in the country. Besides that, we can also cooperate in many international issues related, also, to humanitarian causes.
Mr. Costa said that as representative of the Portugal his main task is to create and identify opportunities of cooperation in all relevant areas: political, economic, academic, cultural, social, etc. He reiterated that academic exchanges as one of the more promising areas of cooperation between two countries, as it involves young people and progress in knowledge that will be very beneficial for the future of both countries.
Answering to a question about the Brexit he said many EU objective is to respects UK’s options, but, as well, to maintain an excellent and cooperative relation with it. Therefore, negotiations are taking place with that aim. USA is an important partner both of Portugal and the EU. The EU utmost effort is to cooperate with Washington and the American Administration in all the areas of relevant interest to both sides and at the international level.
Sharing his achievements since his appointment in Pakistan, he said during his stay, several events took place that contributed to the cooperation between the two countries. In 2016, Portuguese Foreign Minister met with the Federal Minister for Ports and Shipping Senator Kamran Michael during his visit to Portugal and discussed multilateral events and political consultations between two countries. And later in January, a seminar was organized by Portuguese Trade and Investment Agency, AICEP, on Pakistan economy and there was an exchange of business delegations between two countries. On special invitation of the Portuguese Catholic Church, a Pakistani delegation led by Senator Kamran Michael visited on the special occasion of His Holiness Pope Francis to commemorate the 100 years of the Apparitions of Fatima.
Talking about the humanitarian and current political situation in Pakistan he said that as an EU member country he respect the Pakistani Constitution and the democratically elected authorities. As always between friendly nations, EU can discuss freely issues of common interest beyond closed doors and exchange points of view and perspective on them. “I can see there is a growing interest I Pakistan towards Portugal, and vice-versa. We should look forward to that both countries are able to benefit from that mutual feeling, he added”.
Charged’ Affair of the Portugal said that he is renegotiating cultural agreements that also comprehend areas like sports, media, etc. Naturally, those are areas of extremely importance for consolidating relations between the two countries, he said.
Talking about the issues Pakistani students and other business community facing in getting visas and entry to EU countries, he clarified that naturally, we recognize the qualities of Pakistani students and are willing to host them in our universities. Anyway, each candidate has to go through a visa application process where the merits of the case will be thoroughly analyzed. In any case, I would like to reiterate that I consider academic exchanges as one of the more promising areas of cooperation, as it involves young people and progress in knowledge that will be very beneficial for the future of both countries.