ISLAMABAD: South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation Director General for South Asia and Ministry of Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Dr. Mohammad Faisal Tuesday said the government was making all-out efforts to promote tourism sector, especially religious one in the country.
Speaking at a seminar “Heritage Diplomacy; A Gadget for Religious Peace, organized by Regional Rapport here at National Library, He said Pakistan had many sacred religious sites and these sites had potential to attract foreign tourists.
He said Pakistan always welcomed religious tourism and facilitated foreign visitors. Since coming into power, the present government was making efforts to promote tourism, especially religious tourism of Pakistan, he added. To realize the potential of tourism, the government had taken a number of steps including liberalization of the visa regime and developing tourism infrastructure.
He said the opening of Kartarpur Corridor was the single most important milestone, unprecedented in the history of South Asia.
He expressed the hope that this project would materialize soon and pilgrims from across the border would be able to visit the holy site. “We must learn to coexist and cherish diversity,” he added.
Various governments had undertaken a number of steps whereby heritage diplomacy and culture had been promoted, he said and added in 2018, the Ministry of Information, Broadcasting had announced the first ever film and culture policy of the country.
Under the policy, the focus had been shifted to building cultural infrastructure in the country, promotion of visual and performing arts, promotion of music and other arts, development and preservation of book and culture as well as archeological places, he added.
Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA) Director General Jamal Shah, in his presentation, highlighted the importance of cultural heritage in the country.
He said cultural heritage creates awareness and plays a crucial role in the promotion of peace.
Center for Culture and Development Executive Director Dr. Nadeem Omer, in his paper titled “Heritage as Soft Power”, highlighted various aspects of the heritage.
He appreciated the organizer of the event, saying that such events would create awareness for understanding the importance of cultural heritage.
Folklorist, Scholar, and Founder of Lok Virsa Dr. Uxi Mufti, in his paper, highlighted the intangible heritage in a modern perspective.
He said intangible heritage should be preserved and promoted to achieve the benefits of rich heritage.
Earlier, Regional Rapport Executive Director Almas Haider Naqvi welcomed the guests in the programme.
Chairman of Industries Research Cell Rauf Azad Kakepoto and a large number of people from different walks of life also attended the event.
Nahakki Tunnel opened for traffic
ISLAMABAD: The 745-meter-long Nahakki Tunnel has been completed in Mohmand Agency.
The tunnel has been opened for all kinds of traffic as well. Locals talking to a private news channel said after the construction of the tunnel, traveling of five hours has been reduced to merely 2.5 hours.
People said they were happy with this infrastructure as it would facilitate them in traveling and save time.
Turkey hits out at Moody’s after credit rating cut
ANKARA: Turkey on Saturday lambasted Moody’s ratings agency after it cut Ankara’s credit rating further into junk territory, saying the downgrade raised concerns over the institution’s “objectivity and impartiality”.
The agency downgraded the long-term debt rating to B1 from Ba3 and said it maintained the negative outlook for Turkey, in a statement late Friday.
Although the country had a “large, diverse economy” and government debt was low, Moody’s said this was outweighed increasingly by “continued erosion in institutional strength and policy effectiveness on investor confidence”.
But the Turkish treasury and finance ministry said the move was “incompatible with the Turkish economy’s fundamental indicators”.
“As a result, this raises questions over the objectivity and impartiality of the body’s analyses,” the ministry added in a statement.
It pointed to rising tourism revenues, falling inflation, and a new judicial reform package as examples of “very positive developments that we sadly see are being ignored”.
The Turkish economy entered into recession for the first time in a decade last year following a currency crisis in the summer amid tensions with the United States.
Russia warns against ‘hasty conclusions’ over tanker attacks
MOSCOW: Russia warned Friday against jumping to conclusions over the attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman after US President Donald Trump blamed them on Iran.
“We consider it necessary to refrain from hasty conclusions,” the Russian foreign ministry said, calling for a thorough international investigation.
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