ISLAMABAD   -   Senate Deputy Chairman Saleem Mandviwalla has underscored the need for enhanced trade, economic and parliamentary linkages and further activating the parliamentary friendship groups in Pakistani and Swedish parliaments to steer the agenda for boosting the economic cooperation.

He expressed these views in a meeting with Ambassador of Sweden Ingrid Johansson at the Parliament House here on Thursday. The deputy chairman said that trade volume between the two sides was not up to the mark and both the countries needed to further explore opportunities for mutually beneficial trade and investment opportunities.

“Parliaments can play a vital role in increased people to people contacts and therefore parliamentarians of the two sides must have frequent interactions to learn from each other’s experiences and share ideas on issues of bilateral concern,” he emphasised, and proposed that formulating an experience sharing mechanism between the two parliaments to benefit from the technical expertise as well as insight on each other’s working.

The meeting was also attended by senators Sitara Ayaz and Behramand Tangi. Both the legislators called for boosting cooperation in different sectors, including education and health. They said that Sweden was the best example where women folk had an active role in national development and Pakistan could benefit from its rich experience in mainstreaming women into the development process to expedite growth and prosperity of the country. 

“Both sides need to make collective efforts to revive these relations to optimal level in all the areas of mutual interest,” he maintained. The deputy chairman also extended invitation to the speaker of the Swedish parliament to visit Pakistan which was happily received by the ambassador.

Swedish Ambassador agreed with the views of the Senate deputy chairman and stressed that enhanced cooperation between the two sides would usher a new era of development and open up new vistas of bilateral cooperation. She thanked the deputy chairman for candid views on increased institutional cooperation.