ISLAMABAD: The new ambassador of the European Union Dr Riina Kionka assumed her responsibility in Pakistan. Ahead of the 75th Independence Day of the country and as a commemoration for 60 years of EU-Pakistan relations, she played the national anthem on trumpet.
This unique way to mark Aug 14 was shared through a special campaign on social media on Thursday.
According to a press release issued by the EU delegation, the union is committed towards creating a stable, democratic and pluralistic country that respects human rights and benefits from its full economic potential by supporting sustainable and inclusive development for all its citizens. Collaboration between the EU and Pakistan is grounded in the Strategic Engagement Plan (SEP) signed in 2019.
Areas of cooperation under the SEP include peace and security, democracy, rule of law, human rights, migration and other sectors such as energy, climate change and science and technology.
The EU is one of Pakistan’s largest trading partners and has supported Pakistan’s integration into the global economy and its sustainable economic development, by granting it preferential access to the European single market under the GSP+ system since 2014. Ambassador Kionka called on Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, who said that Pakistan attached high importance to its relations with EU as well as its historically close and cooperative bilateral ties with EU member states.
Recalling his recent telephone conversations with the EU Council President Charles Michel and president of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, the PM expressed confidence in upcoming visits of EU’s parliamentary delegations as well as the next rounds of political and security dialogues that will take place under EU-Pakistan Strategic Engagement Plan.
He credited the current GSP Plus scheme with enhancing the mutually beneficial trading ties between Pakistan and EU and hoped that Pakistan would continue to be part of the arrangement beyond 2023.
Published in Dawn, August 12th, 2022