Largest-ever Australia-Pakistan Parliamentary Friendship Group established

Deputy Prime Minister, President of the Senate and Speaker of the House of Representatives are also the members of Friendship group.

BYYasir Rehman


1012

The largest-ever Australia-Pakistan Parliamentary Friendship Group has been established in the 47th Parliament of Australia.

The Group comprises 38 members from both the Houses of the Australian Parliament; the Senate and the House of Representatives. It has representation from all Australian States.

The Parliamentary Friendship Group is chaired by Hon. Maria Vamvakinou MP from the ruling Australian Labor Party (ALP) while Hon. Rowan Ramsey MP from the opposition Liberal Party is the Vice Chair.

The other Honorable members of the Group inter-alia include Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Hon. Richard Marles MP; President of the Senate Hon. Senator Sue Lines; Speaker of the House of Representatives Hon. Dugald Milton Dick, MP; former Foreign Minister Hon. Senator Marise Payne; and former Defence Minister Hon. Senator
Linda Reynolds.

Pakistan and Australia have maintained friendly and cooperative relations since the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries soon after Pakistan gained independence in 1947.

The bilateral cooperation over the past 75 years has extended to the areas of politics; trade and investment, defence and security, science and technology, social and economic development, education, agriculture, sports, tourism, and environment. The two countries have established multiple institutional mechanisms to discuss ongoing cooperation and explore new avenues of future collaboration.

The presence of over 100,000 strong Pakistani Diaspora in Australia acts as a strong bridge between the two countries and their peoples.

In Pakistan, both the Senate and the National Assembly have separate Pakistan-Australia Parliamentary Friendship Groups. Hon. Senator Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar is the Convener of the Group in the Senate, while Speaker of the National Assembly Hon. Raja Pervez Ashraf, MNA is the President of the Group and Minister for Information and Broadcasting Hon. Marriyum Aurangzeb, MNA is the Convener of the Group in the National Assembly.

“The establishment of Pakistan-Australia Parliamentary Friendship Groups highlights the significance of friendly and cooperative relations between the two countries”, Pakistan High Commission said in a statement on Wednesday.

“In addition to promoting Parliamentary cooperation, these Groups will also help further strengthen bilateral relations and expand cooperation in multiple areas”, statement read.

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