Abu Dhabi: Pakistan and Portugal on Tuesday decided to set up a joint Task Force to examine the possibility of exporting trained nurses to Portugal. The decision was made at a meeting held between President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister of Portugal Jose Socrates on the sidelines of the World Future Energy Summit, 2011, during which they also agreed to develop partnership in the socio-economic sector. It was noted that Pakistan had the capability to produce trained nursing professionals for service in Portugal and other European and Middle Eastern countries.The cooperation to this effect could be beneficial for both sides, President said adding Pakistan could train and export qualified nurses to Portugal under a mutually agreed framework.The President also highlighted Pakistan’s role as frontline state in war against militancy, the sacrifices rendered by its people and the armed forces and called for greater international understanding and support to Pakistan to fight the menace.President said Pakistan-Portugal relations were multifaceted and friendly characterized by mutual respect and shared interests as both Pakistan and Portugal have supported each others’ candidatures to a number of positions in various UN and international bodies.
It was noted that as a result of number of visits, taken place between the two countries in the recent years, their bilateral relations had received fresh momentum.The two leaders touched upon various matters of common interest including the situation in Afghanistan and bilateral cooperation in the energy sector.Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) Plus facility and Pakistan’s bid for signing the Free Trade Agreement with EU also came under discussion. The President also urged Portugal’s support to Pakistan’s for EU’s GSP plus as well as for negotiations on FTA with the European Union.The President appreciated Portugal’s support in the initiative taken recently by the EU Council approving special trade concessions to Pakistan.It was also agreed to learn from the Portuguese experience in coastal monitoring and establish a similar structure in Pakistan.Both sides also identified the areas for trade cooperation like Yarn, Leather and Leather Products, Cotton Fabrics, Synthetic Textiles, Cutlery, Towels, Footwear, Surgical Instruments, Chemicals, Furniture, Marble and Onyx, Rice, Readymade garments, Raw Cotton, Hosiery and Linen, industrial machinery and related equipment.Portuguese Prime Minister underscored the need for further enhancement of bilateral relations between the two countries. He also acknowledged Pakistan’s role in fight against terrorism and also assured full support to Pakistan in its fight against militancy – APP