KARACHI  - Pakistan and Sudan have important strategic values in their own regions and have similar features while it is important for both the countries to make the bilateral relations stronger.

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Educational and research linkages between Pakistan and Sudanese institutions can play a pivotal role to bring both the countries more close to each other. These views were expressed by the speakers at an Iftar-Dinner, held in honour of Ambassador of Sudan Al-Sahie Ahmed Muhammad, at International Centre for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS), Karachi University.

According to a Karachi University statement on Wednesday, the Ambassador said, “We have religious and cultural relations between people to people. Sudan can be a commercial hub for Pakistan to reach other African countries.”  A lot of Sudanese love to read the poetry of Allama Iqbal, which shows that they have good image of Pakistan, he said.

Karachi University Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Muhammad Qaiser, said that there was a need to bring Pakistanis and Sudanese more close to each other.  He maintained that educational and research linkages should be developed between both the countries. The Vice-Chancellor thanked the ambassador for visiting the Karachi University.

ICCBS Director Prof Dr Muhammad Iqbal Chaudhry on the occasion said that Pakistan had Indus Civilization while Sudan had Nile Civilisation, which revealed that Pakistan and Sudan had common features.

Likewise, both the countries have tremendous skilled human resources and intellectuals working all over the world, he added and thanked the Ambassador for paying visit to ICCBS.

A number of Sudanese, living in Pakistan, students, members of teaching and non teaching faculties and higher officials of KU administration were present on the occasion.

‘SBI ATTACHED TO FINANCE DEPT’: Sindh Board of Investment is now an attached department of the Finance Department and previous projects shall continue uninterrupted.

This was stated by Sindh Secretary Finance Naveed Kamran Baloch while clarifying the ambiguities about the alleged disbandment of Sindh Board of Investment, said a statement issued on Thursday.

He further explained that the SBI and Sindh Enterprises Development Fund as constituted by the government of Sindh shall keep on working under their defined mandates.

The SBI was upgraded and given the status of Investment Department in April 2010, which has now been de-notified. However, the SBI, which was constituted in March 2009 stands functional and all the projects/initiatives undertaken by the SBI shall be implemented in letter and spirit. Under the guidance of Chairman SBI, Muhammad Zubair Motiwala and outgoing Secretary Investment Ms. Naheed S Durrani, SBI has taken many initiatives to trigger socio-economic uplift of the province at grassroots level.  Earlier, the SBI was also declared as focal agency to facilitate all Wind Energy projects, alongside other alternative energy projects, in the Wind Corridor of Sindh pursuant to which one-window facilitation was being provided to all local as well as international investors in this regard.

Aside from this, other major projects initiated by the SBI are Entrepreneurship Development Program for developing entrepreneurial mindset, knowledge, and skills in the educated youth of the province; establishment of Drip Irrigation Plant in collaboration with Agriculture Department; establishment of Sukkur Dry Port; and establishment of Marble City, Larkana Special Economic Zone, and Khairpur Special Economic Zone.

The Education City Project, which has now attained maturity stage is also being executed by the SBI under the directives of the Sindh chief minister.  Sindh Enterprise Development Fund, a not-for-profit company is another window created by SBI for subsidising credit finance for agribusinesses in Sindh by incurring the liability of the KIBOR on bank loans secured by applicant entrepreneurs on the latter’s behalf. Sindh Minister for Finance Murad Ali Shah has also fully supported all the projects already undertaken by the SBI in his preliminary briefing about the progress of the Sindh Board of Investment.