Barter trade, other measures to boost Pakistan, Russia ties: ambassador

Barter trade, other measures to boost Pakistan, Russia ties: ambassador


Putin to attend Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit: Ganich

ISLAMABAD (Almas Haider Naqvi) - The Russian ambassador to Pakistan, Danila Ganich, says both countries have reached an agreement on a free payment structure for barter trade, eliminating the need for the US dollars in bilateral transactions. 

Ganich, while speaking to Dunya News, emphasised that no third party would determine their efforts and that Russia and Pakistan would be allies and partners amidst geopolitical changes.

President Vladimir Putin, he announced, was set to attend the Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit, further accelerating the process of regional cooperation. The  ambassador also expressed hope that Russian oil would provide relief to Pakistan. He said that being a member of the Paris Club, they had rescheduled Pakistan's loans. 

Pakistan is an independent sovereign state and in this regard, it is to take a political decision concerning the construction of the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline and Russia's Pakistan Stream Gas Pipeline. 

The ambassador refrained from commenting on the internal politics of Pakistan, emphasising his commitment to upholding the best relations with the country regardless of which party rules. 

Ganich urged Pakistan and India to resolve the Kashmir conflict at the negotiating table rather than involve any third party. He suggested that Russia could play a role in resolving the core issue if both sides requested it. The ambassador added that there was no immediate solution to the war in Ukraine and that defeating Russia on the battlefield would be unrealistic and dangerous for the world. 

The relationship between Pakistan and Russia, he said, was friendly and grounded in realism, with the former being viewed as a reliable partner and friend by the latter. Both nations had excellent political and diplomatic ties and had been working to improve their public and commercial interests, he said. 

Their mutual influence in the world is significant, with Pakistan's role in Afghanistan being especially crucial.

He further said that during the 1990s the trade between the two countries was only $100 million which reached one billion dollars recently. There was a five-fold increase in trade between Pakistan and Russia in recent years, he said. 

The ambassador further noted that the shift from a unipolar world to a multipolar world had led to an increased closeness between Pakistan and Russia. The world at large was witnessing attempts at domination, which in turn was leading people to seek self-reliance or to become real allies.

The geopolitical changes, he pleaded, were expected to accelerate the regional cooperation process and facilitate the formation of new alliances. Based on the shared values that Pakistanis and Russians hold precious, the two nations are expected to become rich allies and partners. The ambassador remarked that various regional integration projects such as China's One Belt One Road, Russia's Eurasian Economic Union, and Pakistan's connectivity project have different names but share the goal of promoting connectivity and infrastructure development in the region.

He said a strong defence relationship exists between Pakistan and Russia. He said cooperation in the military, anti-narcotics and educational sectors was there.

The ambassador added that Russia's economic strength may be not that strong, but it remains a nuclear superpower. He warned that countries should avoid escalating tensions on the military front. Moreover, it is notable that Pakistan has recommended to Shafqat Ali Khan, a skilled diplomat in Russia, to establish a payment infrastructure free from the dollar to minimise reliance on it.