Prime Minister Gilani said that Turkey and Pakistan enjoyed deep historical and cultural ties spanning over decades. — File Photo

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani left on a three-official day visit to Turkey on Monday to hold discussions with the Turkish President and the Prime Minister on bilateral and regional issues.

Talking to newsmen at Chaklala air force base, the Prime Minister said that Turkey and Pakistan enjoyed deep historical and cultural ties spanning over decades.

The ties of both the countries are based on shared values, mutual trust and a common vision, he added.

The Prime Minister is leading a delegation comprising Commerce Minister Makhdoom Amin Fahim, Petroleum Minister Syed Naveed Qamar, Minister for Water and Power Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, Minister for Railways Haji Ghulam Ahmed Bilour, Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir and Chairman Board of Investment Saleem Mandviwala.

Gilani along with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will co-chair the inaugural session of High Level Cooperation Council (HLCC).

Both the countries along with Afghanistan are seeking to expand their trilateral cooperation in multidimensional fields, the Premier said adding that the trilateral cooperative relations would bring about regional stability and peace.

He said he and President Asif Zardari would soon visit Turkey for more rounds of trilateral talks to enhance regional cooperation.

Gilani said,”aim of his visit is to enhance bilateral ties with Turkey with particular focus on benefiting from each other in areas of economy, trade and investment”.

The brotherly countries will also search for more avenues to strengthen their collaboration in defence field, he added.

The Prime Minister said that the project of running of a goods train between Turkey and Pakistan would facilitate two-way trade.

Cabinet ministers and armed services chiefs saw off the Prime Minister and his delegation.