Karachi—Karachi Council on Foreign Relations and the Institute for Political and International Studies (IPIS) – Iran signed an important accord to develop cooperation and partnership between the two institutions in the Prime Minister house on March 25th, 2016. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani along with a large political and economic delegation arrived Pakistan on a two-day visit to meet with Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif with an aim to boost trade ties and energy cooperation between the two states.
The Memorandum of Understanding was signed between KCFR and Iranian institute by Mr. Ahsan Mukhtar Zubairi Secretary General KCFR and H.E. Mr. Mehdi Honardoost on behalf of Institute for Political and International Studies in the presence of Prime Minister of Pakistan Mian Nawaz Sharif, and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. Other key notables present during the ceremony include Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz, Minister of State and special assistant to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Syed Tariq Fatemi, Finance Minister of Pakistan Mohammad Ishaq Dar, Foreign Secretary of Pakistan Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry, Mr. Mohammad Javed Zarif Iranian Foreign Minister, Commerce Minister and Finance Minister and other members of the Iranian delegation. Presence of these eminent policy makers and heads of the states of Pakistan and Iran increased the significance of the agreement exponentially.
The key areas and scope of cooperation between KCFR and IPIS include culture, education and research. Both parties agreed to promote and support the activities to contribute better understanding and relations between Pakistan and Iran. The agreement includes exchange of scholars, youth groups and international experts at universities in Pakistan and Iran. The scope of cooperation also includes co-sponsoring of bilateral seminars and panel discussions on regional and global issues of mutual interests of both countries and exchange of research papers between the two parties.
The agreement is likely to improve social and cultural ties between the two countries. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani & Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif personally congratulated Mr. Ahsan Mukhtar Zubairi Secretary General, KCFR after signing the MOU. KCFR has already signed MOUs with three Chinese institutes, and think tank of U.S.A, Russia, South Korea, Egypt, & Nepal to cooperate in different fields.