Visit of Mrs. Anne-Marie IDRAC, French Minister for Foreign Trade to Pakistan
(July 22, 2009)
Anne-Marie IDRAC, French Minister
for Foreign Trade, along with a delegation of French companies, has arrived
today in Pakistan to visit Islamabad and Lahore.
Ten weeks after the visit of
President Asif Ali Zardari in Paris, Anne-Marie IDRAC will reaffirm France’s
commitment in favor of Pakistan’s development. The Minister will call on
President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani and will meet
her counterpart Hina Rabbani Khar. In Lahore, the Minister will meet with Chief
Minister Punjab, Shabbaz Sharif and the Pakistani and French business
“France wants Pakistani democracy
to succeed. This requires security, fight against terrorism and economic
development. France wants to be a prominent partner for Pakistan in those areas.
Transport, energy, water treatment and the food sector are priority sectors for
the development of Pakistan and all correspond to a strong French know-how. ”,
Anne-Marie Idrac said before leaving for Pakistan.
On the occasion of the Conference
of the “Friends of Democratic Pakistan” during which 27 countries and 16
International Organizations gathered in Tokyo on April 17, 2009, France has
pledged a 300 million euro assistance package over three years. This assistance
will be channelled through the French development Agency (AFD) that included
Pakistan in its operations after the 2005 earthquake and opened an office in the
country in 2007.
In 2008, the global volume of trade
between France and Pakistan reached 880 million euros, growing by 6% compared to
2007. There are currently 35 French companies present in Pakistan.