Pakistan and Kyrgyzstan are very attractive for foreign investors. Both countries have perspective sectors of the national economy like agriculture, textile, light industry etc. There are a lot of historical sightseeing, beautiful natural landscapes in Pakistan, which are similar to Kyrgyzstan and therefore need to be invested and developed.
There is no universal model in theworld for a state to be successful without social problems. Each nation and each country is unique and therefore, one country’s development model cannot be fully applied to another country
EVOLVE: Please share your journey with us before coming to Pakistan and what will be your main focus as a Head of Mission?
Sagynbek Ibraev: My diplomatic mission in Pakistan is my third assignment abroad. Before Islamabad, I worked at various positions in Kyrgyz embassies in Tehran and Kabul. I could say that I’m well familiar with culture, traditions, nature and mentality of the people in the region. Every country and nation of the region is unique and peculiar, but at the same time, I’m convinced more and more of our close connection.
People living in Pakistan differ from other Asian countries by their hospitality. Therefore, Kyrgyz diplomats in Islamabad always feel strong support on the part of the Government and the people of Pakistan. It is a pleasure for us to live and work in your beautiful country among brotherly people of Pakistan.
My diplomatic activities in Islamabad are focused on developing political, business, scientific and cultural ties between our countries. Today Pakistan plays important role in the region and is involved in huge regional transport and energy projects. So, strengthening bilateral relations between Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan needs to be a component in developing regional cooperation
EVOLVE: China, an economy of US$ 16.7 trillion will come closer to European markets in result of Silk Road Economic Belt route of the ‘One Belt, One Road’. How can
Central Asian States play their role in such a scenario, especially the Kyrgyzstan?
Sagynbek Ibraev: Indeed, Chinese investments in development of regional infrastructure are quite impressive. It is well known that Kyrgyzstan shares a long border with China and our cooperation with this great country is consistently developing based on principles of good neighborliness and mutual interests.
Since ancient times Kyrgyzstan was a transit hub on the way of the Great Silk Road and today Chinese goods are being exported to the Heartland of Eurasia through Kyrgyzstan. With the implementation of regional project “One Belt, One Road” and as its part the CPEC, Central Asian countries will get the shortest access to the open sea through Pakistani ports of Karachi and Gwadar.
Thus, Pakistan may obtain the status of Marine Transit Hub and Kyrgyzstan will become a Ground Transport Hub for developing trade between South Asia and Eurasian Economic Union.
EVOLVE: Kyrgyzstan has improved its position in the International Doing Business 2016 index, ranking 67th out of 189 countries. What strategy your government opted to make this achievement?
Sagynbek Ibraev: It is known that there are few models of development and prosperity of the countries that have been succeeded once overcome numerous difficulties. Therefore, I believe there is no universal model in the world
for a state to be successful without social problems. Each nation and each country is unique and therefore, one country’s development model cannot be fully applied to another country. Each state must pass through its own way of development and pay its price for the success that in my opinion can be achieved by increasing the level of awareness of the people and government whom these people elect.
Unlike our neighboring countries rich in natural resources, Kyrgyzstan does not possess large reserves of oil or gas. We are actively developing national agriculture, textiles and clothing industry, ecotourism and mining.
In order to attract foreign investments to Kyrgyzstan, our Parliament and Government adopted liberal laws that ensure foreign companies’ security interested in investment in the economy of Kyrgyzstan.
Historically, Kyrgyz people practiced consultative way of governance and Kyrgyz women always play an important role in social and political life in the country. You might agree that the aforementioned is also similar to the spirit, culture and nature of Pakistani people. Today, Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan are the pioneers among Muslim countries in the region on building a parliamentary democracy where women play an important role in social life and governance in our countries.
Despite originality and diversity of the culture of Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan, we share common historical and cultural values. The culture and heritage left by our ancestors should contribute to the development of current political and trade- economic relations between the countries
Therefore, Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan should share their experiences and develop bilateral ties for the benefit of the people of our countries. The culture and heritage left by our ancestors should contribute to the development of current political and trade economic relations between Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan.
EVOLVE: How do you evaluate Pakistan, its people and their potential and how do you feel while working in Pakistan in comparison of other countries?
Sagynbek Ibraev: Despite originality and diversity of the culture of Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan, we share common historical and cultural values and the religion – Islam.
There are many common words in Kyrgyz and Urdu languages sharing the same meaning. We have common traditions and values of life – hospitality, respect of elders, maintaining family ties etc. Therefore, staying in Pakistan is a great pleasure and honor for all Embassy staff and me. Actually, we do not feel ourselves here as aliens. Moreover, we have a unique opportunity to be in touch with the multicolored and multifaceted culture of Pakistan, to know your inspired traditions, vision of life that once again confirms we are kindred people having common historical ancestors.
EVOLVE: Please share your vision and initiatives to promote bilateral relations between two countries? What initiatives are required to be taken to connect Pakistan and Kyrgyz business community? Sagynbek Ibraev: Pakistan was among the first coun- tries who recognized the Independence of the Kyr- gyzstan in 1992 after the Soviet Union collapse and we remember and appreciate it. The existing level of political dialogue between Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan is
considered as excellent. As a matter of fact, in December 2015 H.E. Mr. Erlan Abdyldaev, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kyrgyzstan, visited Islamabad and in May 2015 H.E. Mr. Nawaz Sharif, Prime Minister of Pakistan had official visit to Kyrgyzstan and both sides signed two intergovernmental agreements on cooperation on Natural Disasters and Combating Illicit Drug Trafficking.
In January 2016, Mr. Khawaja Muhammad Asif, honorable Federal Minister of Water and Power of Pakistan visited Kyrgyzstan where he had fruitful negotiations with the Government of Kyrgyzstan on developing of bilateral and regional cooperation in the field of energy, trade and transport.
In May 2016, on initiative of the Trade Development Authorities of Pakistan, capital of Kyrgyz Republic – Bishkek received Trade Caravan of Pakistan. During two days residents of the capital enjoyed Road show organized by TDAP together with CCI of Kyrgyzstan, which included fairs of Pakistani products, food and B2B meetings.
Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan are closely cooperating in the framework of international and regional organizations such as UN, WTO, ECO, OIC and others. During the SCO Head of States Summit in Russia in June 2015, Kyrgyzstan has confirmed its readiness to support Pakistan candidacy to become a full member-state of SCO. Unfortunately, the current trade and economic relations between Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan is recognized by both sides as very low and does not correspond to the existing potential and capability of our countries. I believe this situation is related to the prevailing security situation in the region and lack of reliable information on trade, economic and investment opportunities of Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan and the awareness among the business communities of our countries.
However, in the context of the globalizing world, economic integration plays a valuable role in the system of trade and economic cooperation between foreign countries. In our case, the development of the entire complex of regional trade and economic cooperation need to be prioritized.
Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan is the member of the WTO and the Quadrilateral Agreement on Transit-in-Traffic. In August 2015, Kyrgyzstan has become the member-state to Eurasian Economic Union that includes Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus and Armenia. Currently, Pakistan and China are actively involved in the CPEC project the implementation of which will provide a shortest route and ensure connection between these countries and other regions to the seaports of Pakistan from one side and from other side, Kyrgyzstan could become a “gateway” for trade development between South Asia and Eurasian Economic Union.
Taking this opportunity, I would like to express my appreciation for the opportunity given to me to deliver my message to Pakistani business community through your honorable magazine and to highlight the important role of mass media as a bridge to promote bilateral and international relations between the countries.
EVOLVE: What are the most suitable sectors for Kyrgyz businessmen to invest in Pakistan? What are the suitable projects for Pakistani businessmen to invest in Kyrgyzstan?
Sagynbek Ibraev: Pakistan and Kyrgyzstan are very attractive for foreign investors. Both countries have perspective sectors of the national economy like agriculture, textile, light industry etc. There are a lot of historical sightseeing, beautiful natural landscapes in Pakistan, which are similar to Kyrgyzstan and therefore need to be invested and developed. The most important is that our countries having good human and intellectual resources, required skills and experiences to push forward our economy. Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan among themselves could share their advanced technology and invaluable experiences on how to attract investments to develop various sectors of economy agriculture, food processing, textile and light industry, tourism, medicine, information technologies. It can be done through consistent joint efforts to strengthen peace, stability and security in our region free from any kind of manifestations. violence, international terrorism and regional extremism, illicit drug, human trafficking and weapons of mass
EVOLVE: You work hard as a Head of Mission. What do you do to relax?
Sagynbek Ibraev: Indeed, to work in such important country in the region as Pakistan is a great responsibility accompanied by greater responsibilities. In fact, most of my time takes my work and often there is no time to relax.However, I try to spend more time with my family especially with my two-year-old son. We visit playgrounds, take walks in parks and ride a motorcycle. I think family is the most important thing a person can have in this world, so I relax when I spend time with my wife and son.
EVOLVE: Any message to the readers of EVOLVE?
Sagynbek Ibraev: Dear friends! Together we aspire for peace, harmony and prosperity of our countries and peoples as well as our common region.We share common difficulties, although we have needs and demands not fully satisfied, we still have a rich historical heritage, culture and faith in Allah.
In order to maintain peace and harmony in our families, we need to strengthen peace and security in the region. Therefore, we must work together and make every possible effort to achieve this goal by raising our awareness and inculcating ourselves and our children high culture values as kindness, compassion and empathy. Using this opportunity, I would like to wish a peace to the EVOLVE readers and all people of Pakistan, and to the Pakistani government continuous success in its quest for development and prosperity of the state.