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Pakistan, Korea sign six agreements

December 04, 2012

South Korean President Lee Myung-bak, right, and his Pakistani counterpart Asif Ali Zardari talk before their meeting at the presidential Blue House in Seoul Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2012. Zardari arrived in Seoul on Monday for a three-day official visit. -AP Photo

SEOUL: Pakistan and Korea on Tuesday inked six accords dealing with modernisation of Pakistan Railways, construction of LNG terminal and cooperation in banking sector, in a bid to further solidify bilateral ties.

The signing of agreements in various sectors came during President Asif Ali Zardari's state visit to the Republic of Korea, during which he met his counterpart and had several meetings with the CEO's and heads of various top companies.

President Zardari who witnessed the signing of almost all the Memorandums of Understanding urged the Korean investors to benefit from Pakistan's generous incentives. Korean counterpart Lee Myung-bak also witnessed the signing of two accords at the President's Office.

The ceremony at the Cheong Wa Dae in Seoul, following the summit level talks between the two sides, was also witnessed by members of the Pakistani delegation including Minister for Water and Power Ch. Ahmad Mukhtar, Minister for Commerce Makhdoom Amin Fahim,    Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Malik Amad and the leader of PML-Q Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain.

A major breakthrough came in the area of modernisation of railways. Pakistan, under the agreement, will seek high speed railways, communication systems, signaling, rail stock, modernisation of operation and management, development of logistics parks and freight terminals.

Along with this will be an exchange of construction and maintenance technologies for infrastructure including tracks, bridges, overhead electrification and power supply systems.

The agreement was signed by Muhammad Arif Azim Secretary Railways and Minister of Railways of South Korea Kwon Do-youp.

President Zardari in his meeting with President KORAIL Chung Chang-Young said Pakistan desired modern and efficient railways to help meet its growing industrial, agricultural and freight needs.

He said that the current fleet of Pakistan Railways was unable to meet the needs of a growing nation and there was an urgent need to upgrade it.

The president said Pakistan was a prime place for foreign investors as the country's large consumer population promised good profits and lucrative business.

He said a large number of Korean companies were already operating in Pakistan and doing good business. He said other companies can invest in many new areas while the existing ones can expand and diversify their operations.