PM leaves for four day official visit to France

Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani left here on Tuesday for a four day official visit to France from May 3-6 to hold talks with the French leadership.

Talking to mediamen at the Chaklala air base, the Prime Minister said France is an important country of the EU, therefore his visit carries special significance.

“We want to enhance our bilateral ties,” he said adding the relations with France will be upgraded from secretary level to ministerial level.

Gilani told that two agreements would be signed to promote economic and trade relations.

He said he will hold talks with the French leadership on defence and security issues.

Minister for Privatization Naveed Qamar, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar and Prime Minister’s Advisor on Minorities Affairs Dr. Paul Jacob are accompanying the Prime Minister.

Federal Ministers including Firdous Ashiq Awan, Makhdoom Amin Fahim, Manzoor Wattoo, Haji Ghulam Ahmed Bilour, Mir Hazar Khan Bijrani, Changez Khan Jamali, Israrullah Zehri, Ghulam Ahmed Bilour, Khuda Buksh Rajar and three armed services chiefs saw off the Prime Minister.

Before his departure, the Prime Minister held a meeting with the three armed services chiefs and discussed security issues.

During his visit the Prime Minister will meet President Nicolas Sarkozy, Prime Minister Francois Fillon, and the President of the Senate Gerard Larcher.

He would also receive Foreign Minister Alain Juppe and Defence Minister Gerard Longuet.

Prime Minister Gilani will have in depth discussions with the French leadership on bilateral, regional and global issues and will convey Pakistan’s interest to comprehensively upgrade political, economic and security cooperation.

The Prime Minister will also address leading French businessmen at the French Business Confederation (MEDEF).

MEDEF International and Pakistan Business Council have decided to establish the Pakistan-France Joint Business Council to facilitate and strengthen bilateral economic and commercial partnership. Declarations on economic and security cooperation will also be signed.