To mark the 79th Anniversary of Pakistan National Day, a reception was held at Lotte Hotel in Seoul on March 18, 2019 hosted by Ambassador Rahim H. Qureshi of Pakisgtan. It was a well-attended diplomatic function.
Among the important guests at the reception was First Vice Minister Cho Hyun of Foreign Affairs of Korea. It was attended by an estimated 400 guests who included the heads of diplomatic missions in Seoul, business leaders and media representatives. There also was a conspicuous presence of the Pakistani diaspora in Korea, who included university professors, research scholars and businessmen.
The Ambassador welcomed the distinguished guests on the occasion and highlighted the significance of the day. He underlined that Pakistan and Republic of Korea enjoyed friendly and cordial relations and highlighted significant developments in bilateral relations in recent years. He also underlined that the democratic Government in Pakistan was working for the economic and social development of the country. He acknowledged the contribution made by Pakistanis in Korea and their support provided to the Embassy.
Speaking on the occasion, the First Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, Cho Hyun, said that close and friendly relations between Pakistan and Korea are underpinned by a strong economic relationship. He also congratulated the Ambassador upon successful convening of 10th Round of Bilateral Political Consultations between the both countries last year. He acknowledged the growth and stability of Pakistan’s economy and the improvement in the security environment of Pakistan.
Excerpts from the speech of Ambassador Qureshi:
His Excellency, Cho Hyun 1st Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, Distinguished Ambassadors and colleagues from Diplomatic Corps, Distinguished guests, Ladies and gentlemen, A very good evening,
It gives me great pleasure and honor to welcome all our distinguished guests on the joyous occasion of Pakistan National Day. My special thanks to His Excellency Cho Hyun, 1st Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs for gracing the occasion as the Chief Guest. Excellency, your presence this evening reflects the longstanding close and friendly relations between Pakistan and Korea.
It was on the historic day of 23rd March that Muslims of South Asia in 1940 at the city of Lahore adopted the Resolution calling for a separate homeland that culminated in the creation of Pakistan in 1947. On this day, we pay tribute to our great leader Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah under whose stellar leadership Pakistan was created.
The Islamic Republic of Pakistan, as we know it today is a country of 200 million people located at the cross-roads of Central Asia, South Asia, China and the Middle East. Today, people of Pakistan are custodians of a democratic and progressive Pakistan. Due to the policies of Prime Minister Imran Khan, there is resounding international optimism about our economy. Through a policy of “Peaceful neighborhood”, Pakistan continues to strive for regional peace, stability and prosperity.
Pakistan and Korea enjoy friendly relations since the establishment of diplomatic relations in November 1983. The people to people interaction has a history going back more than 1600 years. Buddhism was brought to the ancient Kingdom of Baekje by Monk Maranantha from the Gandhara Civilization in the year 384 AD as mentioned in the Korean historical texts of “Samguk Yusa” by Iryeon (1281), “Samgul Sagi” by Kim Busik and “Haedong Goseungjeon” by Gakhun (1215).
Pakistan and Korea relations have grown from strength to strength in all fields. 10th Round of Bilateral Political Consultations (BPC) between Pakistan and Korea was held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of RoK last year. Excellency Mr. Cho Hyun led the Korean side whereas Pakistan side was led by the Foreign Secretary, Ms. Tehmina Janjua. Both sides had useful and productive interaction during the last round of BPC. I hope that regular interactions shall continue to take place between the two sides which will aid in giving impetus to further the freindly relations between the two countries.
We are now moving towards having the third round of Joint Trade Committee consultation for promotion of bilateral trade, Investment and economic cooperation. In last few years Korean companies have been actively engaged in investment into Automotive, Power and Energy, Chemicals and Fast moving consumer goods sectors. The new bilateral initiatives were channelized to further enhance joint ventures in Tourism, Small and Medium Enterprises and Human development.
Towards the close, I would like to express my deep appreciation to our sponsors for their invaluable support in making tonight’s event a great success. I would particularly like to thank Lotte Chemicals, Lotte Confectionary, Korea Energy (KOEN), KHNP and Pakistan Business Association.
I would like to express my deep gratitude to my Korean friends from different walks of life including those from Ministry of Foreign Affairs in making our task easy for expanding and deepening bilateral relations between Pakistan and Korea as without their help it would not have been possible.
I also wish to thank all the officers and officials of my embassy who worked very hard to successfully organize Pakistan National Day.
Once again, I thank the Chief Guest, Mr. Cho Hyun, 1st Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs and every one present for honoring us with their presence tonight. I wish you all a pleasant evening. Thank You.