A highly important message from Russian President, Vladimir Putin, was conveyed to Prime Minister Imran Khan by the Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, during a meeting last week.
According to a senior Pakistani official, who attended the meeting behind closed doors, on the condition of anonymity, the Russian Foreign Minister said that President Putin had asked to inform PM Imran Khan that Russia is open for any cooperation and whatever Pakistan needs, Russia is ready to fulfill it.
To put it simply, Russia has offered a ‘blank cheque’ to Pakistan, the official added.
When asked to elaborate what exactly is meant by a ‘blank cheque,’ the official explained that Russia stands ready for a wide range of bilateral initiatives including gas pipelines, strategic corridors, and defense cooperation.
The onus is on Pakistan to turn the visit of any Russian statesman after nine years into a highly successful visit, the official noted.
During Sergey Lavrov’s two-day visit to Islamabad last week, Russia agreed to supply “special military equipment” to Pakistan to consolidate the latter’s counterterrorism abilities.
Both sides decided to start manufacturing of Russian Coronavirus vaccine, Sputnik V, in Pakistan in the coming months.
Russian Foreign Minister expressed satisfaction over the 46% increase in bilateral trade which crossed $790 million last year.
Both sides also agreed to strengthen and diversify economic cooperation in the energy, infrastructure, defense, and healthcare sectors.