Former President ICCI Shahid Rasheed Butt on Saturday lauded the move of the Prime Minister Imran Khan to normalise bilateral relations with Bangladesh. The move can revive dormant SAARC to bring a meaningful change in the lives of two billion people living in South Asia, he said.
Shahid Rasheed Butt said that the majority of the world’s poor are living in the SAARC region, one of the least integrated areas, who deserve a better life for which the countries must bury their past like the EU, ASEAN and other countries.
He said that masses living in the region could have a break if the regional countries initiate trade which is at the lowest ebb for which cordial relations are imperative.
SAARC countries ignore trade with neighbours and prefer it with countries located thousands of miles away while excessive focus on security has resulted in poverty, illiteracy and other problems.
He noted that 21 percent of the world’s population is living in SAARC countries but their share in global GDP is mere 4.21 percent while small western nations are performing well.
The situation can be improved by reducing mistrust, increasing trade, doing away with tariff and non-tariff barriers and increasing cooperation in all sectors for which all the countries must work together.
He said that South Asian countries must understand the long-term benefits of regional cooperation and conflicts between SAARC nations should be resolved through dialogue to bring stability and finish unending hostility.