As the two countries are already enjoying fruitful cooperation in the security sphere, the High Commissioner explained that he is concentrating on promoting trade between Sri Lanka and Pakistan. The Pakistan HC is already in the process of organizing a conference and a seminar this coming April where the business communities from the two countries can interact.
High Commissioner Saad Khattak also noted that the Higher Education sector in Pakistan is currently offering 1,000 full scholarships to Sri Lankan students in the field of medicine, engineering and IT. This programme has already been give wide publicity in the Sri Lankan media inviting prospective students to apply.
“Officials from Pakistan’s Higher Education authorities will soon visit Sri Lanka to interview these applicants. Besides, this scholarship programme, Pakistan is also keen to offer scholarships to Sri Lankan students studying in their own country in terms of monetary fund,” elaborated the High Commissioner.
Even during President Chandrika Kumaratunga’s tenure, Pakistan offered scholarship programmes such as these, recalled President Gotabata Rajapaksa. This was extended to children of servicemen and especially those who had sacrificed their lives for the country.
The President and the High Commissioner also spoke of the need for better cooperation in immigration.
This will facilitate the two countries’ efforts in controlling the movement of those with questionable records.
President Rajapaksa also commended Pakistan for the excellent work done in promoting Taxila, an ancient institute of higher learning and promised to extend Sri Lanka’s support in this regard.
Secretary to the President Dr. P.B.Jayasundara, Deputy High Commissioner Tanvir Ahmad and Ayesha Abu Bakr Fahad, Second Secretary (Political) of the High Commission were also present.