ISLAMABAD - Ambassador of Romania Emilian Ion is going back to his country after spending seven-and-half wonderful years in Islamabad, delivering the best performance for his country and Pakistan.

Emilian Ion hosted a dinner to bid farewell to his Pakistani friends and various ambassadors based in Islamabad. The function was very well attended.

Ambassador of Uzbekistan Furkat Sadikov told this correspondent that a high-powered business delegation would visit Pakistan in September this year.  He further elaborated that official representation from various ministries would also be there.

Sadikov regretted, “It is very disappointing that we are so close religiously, culturally and regionally but our bilateral trade is just $30 million. The war in Afghanistan is the real factor to keep Pakistan and Central Asia away. I believe as long as we don’t establish the road link from Islamabad to Central Asian Republics, at least we should develop the direct air link as the first step in the right direction; otherwise, we cannot move an inch ahead.”

High Commissioner of India Gautam Bombawala was also there in pleasant mood. The Indian foreign office was having a tradition of sending the senior most official to Pakistan as high commissioner.  Gautum was appreciative for Emilian ion for improving the trade up to $300 million between Pakistan and Romania.

Ambassador of Norway Tore Nedrebo told this correspondent that Laila Bokhari, who is of Pakistani origin and serving as deputy foreign minister in Norway, has also served in the Norwegian embassy in Islamabad as a diplomat ten years ago.

Germany and France are two significant countries of Europe and ambassadors of both these countries to Pakistan are female. French Ambassador Martine Dorance was also present at the moment. She is very choosy about her dresses and its colours.

German Ambassador Ina Lapel is a strong lady with great intellect. She has also served as deputy head of mission to Pakistan ten years ago and can quite easily communicate in Urdu.

Romanian Ambassador Emilian Ion while delivering his farewell speech thanked all the participants and said that Pakistan is one of the most beautiful countries and Pakistani people are amiable. He said that he enjoyed their friendship because it is everlasting.

He also said that serving as an ambassador to Pakistan for seven and a half years was a scintillating experience and during his tenure, he actively struggled to promote Romania as an important European ally of Pakistan. Due to his continuous efforts, Romania has now become as important country as France, Germany and Italy in Pakistan. He said that he was one of the survivors of Naltar Valley chopper crash. He said that Pakistani business community has played a vital role in enhancing trade relations between Pakistan and Romania.

Myanmar’s Ambassador Win Naing sang a beautiful song on the occasion while Yahya Zakir, brother of known painting artist Rabia Zakir, also sang a few songs.

-The writer is a freelance contributor.