Chief Editor: Ansar Mahmood Bhatti

Sustainable development: France, Pakistan on same page: Marc Barety

ISLAMABAD, JUL 16 (DNA) – Ambassador of France Marc Barety has said both France and Pakistan defend multilateralism, a balanced globalization and advocate for sustainable human development, respectful of diversity.French ambassador said, “I am pleased to share this national celebration with the people of Pakistan, whose generosity, hospitality and dynamism I have witnessed during my travels throughout the country and my daily work in Islamabad”.

He expressed these views on the occasion of National Day of France. Federal Minister for Planning Khusro Bakhriar was the chief guest.

This gathering is a great opportunity for me to thank all of you who played a role in development and betterment of relations between France and Pakistan.

The ambassador also thanked Minister Khusro for playing vital role in promoting bilateral relations.

He said it was also about shared interests in security and regional stability, as highlighted by the work of the last France-Pakistan Joint Security Commission held earlier this month in Islamabad.

The visit of Senator Allizard and his delegation in last April, the fourth trip for the Senator, was an occasion to discuss the full potential of Pakistan and reciprocally the French availability to continue and increase its contribution to development for the benefit of the greatest number.

The ambassador said past months have been particularly fertile in terms of concrete achievements, mostly for the direct benefit of the population, in the partnership between our two countries and the French ambition to deepen it.

In an area as essential for population like that of access to water and energy, the French Development Agency – AFD – continues to participate actively for green and sustainable development with nearly 700 million euros mobilized in the hydropower sector, urban transports and water (with financing of 94 million euros this year by the AFD for the treatment of Faisalabad’s water).y the visit to Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi in last April of the largest ever delegation of French companies (30); that should be reflected in a progressive diversification of exchanges and increase of investments.

Ambassador Barety said prosperity of a country depends in particular on the dynamism of its youth, a dynamism conditioned by education and empowerment, favoured by access to culture and ideas.  On all these challenges, French expertise is mobilized in Pakistan.

“In terms of education, our cooperation privileges access to higher education, with several dozens of scholarships this year from the French government to the benefit of young Pakistanis (nearly half of them female students), particularly as part of the ‘Eiffel Excellence’ and ‘Make my Planet great again’ programmes, as well as about 50 co-financed. The increase of these flows, mutually desired, should benefit from the inauguration of an office of Campus France next October in Karachi”.

While talking about culture the ambassador said, culture remains a significant link between our two countries, nourished by the programme of our three Alliance Francaise (French cultural centers) in Islamabad, Karachi and Lahore; the latter achieved eleventh position in the world ranking among a network of eight hundred of Alliance Francaise.

“ I am delighted that the Franco-German cooperation in this area is particularly dynamic: the co-location of our cultural institutes and the more than five Franco-German cultural events organized this year show that reconciliation, then friendship and then close partnership are possible between formerly enemy countries”.

Talking about the importance of the nation day he said every year the union of the French nation is reaffirmed by the celebration of the National Day, commemorating both July 14, 1789, a turning point in the history of the people of France for the conquest of its emancipation and of freedom, and the festival of the Federation in 1790.

“This year our national holiday is spontaneously associated with the memory of the landing of the Allies in Normandy, thus we celebrate the 75th anniversary and, by extension, that of all the forces which participated in the operations of liberation, included two and a half million of fighters coming from the Subcontinent”.

In the end wards were given to winners of paintings and calligraphy competitions. Guests were served with traditional French cuisines.=DNA

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