British High Commissioner Thomas Drew CMG hosted reception for the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, at his residence.
Addressing the reception, Thomas Drew spoke of links between Pakistan and Britain. He said more than 2% of Britain’s population traces their roots back to Pakistan. That means over 200,000 in London alone. And that goes to a bigger point about the nature of our society and our capital in particular. I learned recently that over 300 languages are spoken in London – more than in any other city in the world. It enriches our country – and is something we are very proud of.
Drew said, the Mayor’s visit comes as a particularly good finale to our celebrations of the 70th anniversary of Pakistan’s birth – and of 70 years of friendship between our two countries. Only last week the Mayor wrapped up the London end with the unveiling, alongside Pakistan’s excellent High Commissioner to the UK, of a new bust of Quaid-i-Azam in the British Museum. The photography exhibition you see around you has toured 14 cities in the UK and Pakistan. The title says it all – “shared history, shared future”.
The British High Commissioner said: “We now look forward to the next 70 years. That the British Government has chosen this country to run its biggest development programme in the world or to have its second biggest diplomatic mission says a lot about its commitment to that future. Both countries stand to benefit from the relationship. On the UK side, we are determined to help unleash Pakistan’s considerable potential – the potential of the world’s 5th most populous country. And, as I am sure the Mayor will, say, London will be at the heart of that.”