Pakistan President Dr Arif Alvi has said his country wants to improve commercial and cultural relations with Bangladesh.
Pakistan highly values its ties with Bangladesh and wants to further expand cooperation by using the existing bilateral mechanisms, including Political Consultations at Foreign Secretary Level and Joint Economic Commission, the president said while talking to Pakistan's High Commissioner to Bangladesh, Imran Ahmed Siddiqui, who called on him at Aiwan-e-Sadr, the presidential palace, in Islamabad Tuesday, according to a press statement from the Pakistan High Commission in Bangladesh.
The statement comes when Bangladesh celebrates 50 years of independence from the oppression of Pakistan through a brutal war in 1971. Bangladesh has reiterated the importance of resolving outstanding bilateral issues with Pakistan, including an official apology from Pakistan for the genocide it committed during war. Dhaka has also sought completion of the repatriation of stranded Pakistanis in Bangladesh, and settling the issue of the division of assets.
There is some trade between the two countries, but recent actions by Pakistan have seriously irritated Bangladesh. For example, the Pakistan parliament adopted resolutions against the war crimes trial of Bangladesh, in which some major criminals who committed crimes against humanity in 1971 were convicted and hanged.
According to the Pakistan High Commission statement, Pakistan President Alvi underscored the need to enhance commercial relations, business-to-business cooperation and people-to-people contacts.