LAHORE - Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif said there are bright prospects of increase in trade between Pakistan and Germany in the coming days. He said the both countries have been enjoying best relations since 1947, and added, substantial increase in trade is need of the hour.

He said this while addressing an important meeting of Pakistan German Business Forum in Berlin on Wednesday.

Addressing the meeting, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle welcomed the CM and said that transfer of power through recent elections is a proof of the stable democratic process in Pakistan. He said the role of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif for furthering the peace process in Afghanistan and policy of best relations with India is commendable.

CM Shahbaz Sharif said that elimination of terrorism is a challenge for the PML-N government. He said terrorism did not start suddenly, as its causes are linked to the incidents happened in Afghanistan in 80s. He said it is not a secret that Osama Bin Laden or Taliban worriers are the product of Afghan policy of the West. Pakistan has sacrificed more than 50,000 precious lives in the war against terrorism, he added.

“We are thankful to the German government for celebrating Trade Day with Pakistan in Berlin,” he said adding, “We do not want aid but have come to get technical assistance and trade cooperation.”

He stressed upon Germany to open its markets for Pakistan, remove difficulties in trade and make investment in Pakistan.

He further said that after recent national elections, the German foreign minister was the first important foreign personality who visited Pakistan. He said that establishment of Pakistan German Business Forum in 1990 is a clear proof of the interest of Germany in trade with Pakistan.

The CM said that matter of dictatorship in Pakistan has become the story of past and now there is an era of justice and democracy in the country. He said that judiciary is independent and media is playing its active role in Pakistan.

Shahbaz said that 60 per cent population of the country consisted of youth and it is the endeavor of the government to enable them to play their positive role in strengthening its economy through their abilities instead of going towards extremism. He said that earlier only elite has the monopoly over education of international standard in Pakistan, “but now we have provided this quality education to the children of the poorest families through Daanish schools.”

Earlier, talking to German and Pakistani media in Berlin, the CM said that West and East Germany resolved their issues by setting example of unity and made wonderful progress. He said that all national issues including Kashmir cannot be resolved without economic stability.

Shahbaz Sharif said that Pakistan would have to rely on its own resources for preferring national dignity. He said that overcoming loadshedding is as much essential as terrorism. He said the PML-N government is coping with the challenges being faced by the country with determination and courage.