Analysts see great potential in enhancing cooperation between Pakistan, Iran in diverse fields


Fauzia Nasreen (Former Ambassador): It is very welcoming development that both Iran and Pakistan agreed on having exchanges in field of education. Iran has progressed a lot in science and technology, especially in Nano sector. Pakistan stands to benefit from Iranian expertise in Nano technology. In addition, education in general is a field where both countries can collaborate. A little handicap might be the medium of instruction in Iran that is Persian. Iran has good expertise in horticulture and they can teach us on how to grow and export flowers. Iran is experimenting with new agricultural techniques and Islamabad can also get help of Iranian agricultural experts to boost its agri production. Iran can also help meet Pakistan’s energy needs with oil and gas pipelines. We have to see how we can get benefit in this regard keeping in view the sanctions regime on Iran.

Arif Kamal (Former Ambassador): Relations between Pakistan and Iran need to be upgraded on earlier basis. Both countries are intertwined in deep bonds of religion, culture and values. We should take maximum benefits from each other. Iran can become a valuable member of China Pakistan Economic Corridor as it borders Pakistan. Iran Pakistan gas pipeline project needs to be revived to meet energy shortages of Pakistan. During Iran-Iraq war in 1980s, there was a lot of trade between Pakistan and Iran. International sanctions on Iran is a factor, but it is not a very big one. Iran is a self-reliant nation and they have developed their industry, infrastructure and a number of other factors despite international curbs. We need to have a political will and strong determination to increase our relations with the neighbors.

Dr. Zahid Anwar Khan (IR Expert): CPEC is a key project for Pakistan and is part of Road and Belt Initiative of China. It has contributed a lot in first phase. Now, phase two is underway and is providing employment opportunities to more than 80,000 people. It is a great opportunity for our young people to get employed in various projects. Projects relating to telecommunication and infrastructure are already in progress and incumbent government has taken elaborate measures to further expedite these. After a little hiatus due to Covid-19 situation, government is now determined to accelerate work on Special Economic Zones that will generate employment and business opportunities for people from Pakistan.