ISLAMABAD  - Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif has said that scientific research and use of advanced and modern technology is the catalyst for the economic development. Prime Minister said this while talking to a four-member delegation of CERN who called on him at PM house on Tuesday.

The CERN delegation included Dr Sergio Bertolucci, Director for Research and Scientific Computing, Dr Rudiger, Voss Head of International Relations, Claude Crottaz and Margret Susan Foffano. Dr Ansar Parvez, Chairman Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission and other high government officials were also present on the occasion.

The PM said that the government is fully committed to enhancing Pakistan's international scientific exchange through cooperation with the international scientific community. The PM said that Pakistan has had useful and beneficial cooperation with CERN and expressed the confidence that the cooperation will continue in future as well. "Collaboration with European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) provides an impetus to those working in the area of science and technology, which eventually generates benefits for the whole nation," he added.

The PM said that Pakistan has a long history of successful collaboration with CERN and have concluded several cooperation agreements with CERN and value our strong relations. The prime minister said that Pakistan would like to maintain, even widen, spectrum of its cooperation with CERN into areas, which would benefit humanity such as cancer treatment and sustainable and cleaner energy.

The PM appreciated the remarkable achievements, by CERN, in the field of science and technology adding that he was looking forward to visiting CERN in January but unfortunately could not due to some unavoidable circumstances.

He lauded the exchange of the scientist, engineers and students with CERN and said that it would add to the knowledge and capabilities of our people.

The Prime Minister said that government would like to strengthen collaboration with CERN in future and is looking forward to becoming an associate member of the organization. He told that the engineering base and experience of high precision manufacturing enables Pakistan to make significant contribution to the CERN programme.