ISLAMABAD - Adviser to Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz on Tuesday met with Secretary of State John Kerry on the sidelines of ASEAN Regional Forum in Brunei Darussalam.

The main focus of discussion between the two sides was bilateral cooperation in the post-2014 period.

Aziz emphasised the need for holding the next round of strategic dialogue at the ministerial level between the two countries. The strategic dialogue process provides an institutional mechanism to strengthen bilateral relations action in several areas through different working groups. In this regard, Pakistan is looking forward to Secretary John Kerry’s visit to Pakistan.

The adviser also highlighted that the main focus of the foreign policy would be economic revival and socio-economic development. The two sides must make efforts to increase trade from the current level of $5billion to $10 billion in the next five years.

The adviser also stressed the need for greater market access for Pakistani exports to the United States.

John Kerry appreciated new government’s focus on the economy, and said he accepted in that context the importance of greater market access for Pakistan’s exports to the US. He emphasised that improved law and order was also necessary for economic revival and larger foreign investment.

Aziz expressed the hope that the two sides would be able to have a comprehensive discussion for cooperation in several areas during the upcoming visit of Kerry to Pakistan later this month.

This was the first high-level interaction between the two foreign ministers in which the two sides agreed to work jointly for a fruitful and positive relationship.