Gilani to visit Britain next month

Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani will visit Britain in May to attend the first annual review of the Enhanced Strategic Dialogue between the two countries.

Islamabad: Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani will visit Britain in May to attend the first annual review of the Enhanced Strategic Dialogue between the two countries and launch an investment roadmap to increase bilateral trade to 2.5 billion pounds by 2015.

The two countries launched the Dialogue in April last year during Prime Minister David Cameron`s visit to Islamabad.

The Dialogue covers five areas of cooperation, including trade, finance and development aid, education and health, culture, and defence and security.

Gilani will be accompanied to Britain by a delegation of senior ministers and parliamentarians, the Foreign Office said in a statement.

During May 8-13 visit, Gilani and his British counterpart will review progress in the Enhanced Strategic Dialogue and launch a trade and investment roadmap to increase bilateral trade to 2.5 billion pounds by 2015.

The premier will also interact with British parliamentarians, members of the cabinet, prominent businessmen and investors and the media.

Gilani will address a community gathering and lay the foundation stone of the Consular Hall in the High Commission.

The Foreign Office said Pakistan and Britain were bound by ties "rooted in shared history, cultural values and people-to-people contacts".
Over a million Britons of Pakistan origin and heritage provide a bridge between the two countries. Britain is Pakistan`s second largest trading partner in Europe and an important source of foreign investment and remittances.

Britain has also been a "consistent supporter" for Pakistan?s efforts to gain enhanced trade access to the EU’s markets.

"The visit of the Prime Minister will further enhance the existing relations between the two countries. Both the countries cooperate and coordinate on global and regional issues with a view to promoting stability, peace and security," the statement said.

"The Enhanced Strategic Dialogue will provide the two leaders an opportunity to identify ways and means to further raise the level of cooperation in the various areas of mutual concern," it added.

PTI

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