Pakistan, Azerbaijan must create direct banking channel to expand trade: RCCI

President of the Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI), Zahid Latif Khan. (Photo courtesy: social media)
Updated 04 July 2018
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Pakistan, Azerbaijan must create direct banking channel to expand trade: RCCI

ISLAMABAD: Azerbaijan and Pakistan have to establish direct banking channels and air connectivity, lift off tariff barriers, and create alternative rail and road networks, as well as visa free agreements to enhance bilateral trade relations, said President of the Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) Zahid Latif Khan on the eve of the Business Opportunities Conference in Baku, Azerbaijan.

The RCCI president added that there is a need to explore new avenues of joint ventures and trade connectivity under the umbrella of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

“CPEC has now become a reality on the ground. Pakistan will become the hub of regional connectivity as CPEC will put it on a center stage due to new its energy infrastructure and trade routes,” Latif Khan was quoted as saying by AzerNews.

The RCCI president concluded reminding that Azerbaijan has always been very friendly towards Pakistan, which was among the first three countries to recognize Azerbaijan immediately and reestablish diplomatic ties in July, 1992.

The Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) is organising Business Opportunities Conference and the 31st International Achievement Award ceremony in Azerbaijan’s capital city on July 4-5.

The events will be aimed at promoting business and investment opportunities of Pakistan in Azerbaijan’s business community.

Over 450 Pakistani participants representing tourism, pharmaceutical, chemical, plastic, textile, surgical goods, furniture, food, construction and other industries will be attending the events.

Further, Pakistani and Azerbaijani business communities are going to hold B2B meetings, which Khan also noted that this initiative would lead to creation of new joint ventures in the future.


Beijing dismisses ‘hearsay’ on Muslim internment

Updated 13 November 2018
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Beijing dismisses ‘hearsay’ on Muslim internment

  • Critics say China is seeking to assimilate Xinjiang’s minority population and suppress religious and cultural practices that belong in the minority
  • Beijing has repeatedly described the camps as vocational “training centers” that were built to help people drawn to extremism

BEIJING: China defended its internment of Muslims in the country’s northwest as a terror prevention measure on Tuesday, calling on the international community to reject “hearsay” and believe its official line.
Up to a million Uighurs and other Chinese Turkic-speaking minority groups have been placed in political re-education camps in the Xinjiang region, according to a group of experts cited by the United Nations.
After originally denying the existence of the centers, Beijing has repeatedly described the camps as vocational “training centers” that were built to help people drawn to extremism to stay away from terrorism and allow them to be reintegrated into society.
But the program has faced rising criticism outside the country — notably from the United States and human rights groups.
“We hope our journalist friends and our other foreign friends will take into consideration the information and briefings on the situation given by the Chinese authorities,” said China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi.
“Rumours and hearsay should not be believed,” he said standing next to his German counterpart Heiko Maas at a press conference.
“It’s quite clear that the government in Xinjiang knows best what is happening in Xinjiang — not other people and third party organizations.”
Critics say China is seeking to assimilate Xinjiang’s minority population and suppress religious and cultural practices that conflict with Communist ideology and the dominant Han culture.
Former inmates of the camps say they were detained for having long beards or wearing the veil.
Attacks attributed to Uighurs have left hundreds dead over the last few years in China, many of them in Xinjiang, where Beijing says its concerned about a rise in Islamic radicalism.
The authorities have put in place intrusive measures of security — ubiquitous surveillance cameras, DNA sampling, home visits by officials and GPS trackers in cars.
“We call that a combination of repression and prevention. But we place the priority on prevention. If it’s done well, terrorism won’t expand and take root. It’s the most effective way to combat terrorism,” Wang Yi said.
The German foreign minister did not mention the Xinjiang region at the press conference, but did say he had “spoken on the question of human rights” during his closed meeting with his Chinese counterpart.
A debate on the situation in Xinjiang was held in the German parliament last Thursday.
China’s ambassador to Berlin expressed Beijing’s “profound discontent” and put in an official protest following the “blatant interference” in its “domestic affairs.”