Statement by Co-Chairs: Friends of Democratic Pakistan Workshop on Institution Capacity Building, Ankara, Turkey 8-9 September 2011

Ankara: A workshop on Institution-Capacity Building, from the platform of the Friends of Democratic Pakistan (FoDP), was held in Ankara on 8-9 September 2011. The workshop was co-chaired from Pakistan side by Senator Syeda Sughra Imam, Advisor Policy Research Wing Prime Minister’s Secretariat and from the Turkish side by HE Mr. Halit Cevik Deputy Undersecretary and Mr. Osman Yavuzalp Deputy Director General Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The workshop was attended by representatives of FODP member countries/organizations and their relevant development institutions. Pakistan’s institutions were represented by a high-level official delegation from all seven sectors identified for deliberations at the workshop.

The workshop focused on (i) Agriculture; (ii) Energy; (iii) Higher Education; (iv) Technical Education; (v) Security; (vi) Governance; and (vii) Democracy (Parliamentary Institutions).

A Message from HE Mr. Asif Ali Zardari President of Pakistan was read out by Senator Syeda Sughra Imam to the participants of the Workshop.

In his statement, the Acting Governor State Bank of Pakistan expressed his gratitude to the Government of Turkey for hosting the workshop and for making excellent arrangements. He gave the perspective of the Government of Pakistan on the financial and institutional reforms as part of the overall strategy for economic growth and sustainable development.

He also underlined the need for closer partnerships between various institutions of the FoDP countries and institutions in Pakistan.

Senator Sughra Imam stated that a roadmap for strategic approach needed to be drawn for sustained cooperation between Pakistan and FoDP members and to forge sustained institutional linkages. She underlined the need to take an in-depth review of existing areas of cooperation and the need to establish partnering relations to introduce best practice.

She commended FoDP representatives in Islamabad for their sustained engagement in the Working Group meetings in the lead up to the workshop. The Senator also expressed her gratitude to H.E. Ambassador Rauf Engin Soysal, UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Assistance to Pakistan for making personal efforts and for being associated with the preparatory process throughout.

HE Ambassador Halit Cevik Deputy Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs of Turkey said that the hosting of this workshop on Institution capacity building gave a clear message of Turkey’s support for the people and the Government of Pakistan. He underlined that the FoDP was a comprehensive process led by Pakistan uniquely tailored to address the needs of Pakistan.

He emphasized the need to have a consistent engagement of the international community to assist Pakistan in strengthening its democratic institutions and to acknowledge the sacrifices made by Pakistan both in having devoted its material and human resources and the losses it had suffered to combat extremism and terrorism for global peace and security.

He said Turkey was hopeful that the Ankara Workshop would serve to launch a long-term institutional partnering for Pakistan in accordance with its own national priorities.

Representatives of FoDP member countries and organizations reaffirmed their continued interest and commitment to assist Pakistan in its national development agenda. They stressed the need to further build on the valuable work done in the area of institution-capacity building by involving not only public sector but also private sector organizations for long term linkages.

FoDP members expressed their resolve to share best practices of their various institutions with their equivalent organizations in Pakistan on sustainable basis.

They were of the view that the Workshop had identified areas in which Pakistan would need support from its international partners for sustained institutional linkages and partnerships in the future.

Working sessions were held in which detailed presentations were made jointly by Pakistan’s institutions and FoDP members introducing flagship projects in these areas which the Government of Pakistan had identified for cooperation in institution-capacity building.

In the Session on Agriculture presentation highlighted Pakistan’s institutional scientific knowledge base and research capabilities in agriculture which could be enhanced through cooperation with FODP members. The presentation demonstrated successes of Pakistani institutions in collaboration with international partners in agriculture research, development and technology.

The Session also underscored that Agriculture-lead economic growth through Public Private Partnerships offers the most viable and sustainable institutional linkages that will create employment encourage entrepreneurship, and will help stakeholders at the farm level. It also underlined that newer models of outreach and linkages may be explored further based on experiences of FoDP members.

The Session on Energy focused on national energy needs and the energy deficit faced by Pakistan. A comprehensive briefing was given by AEDB covering all areas of energy and in particular on Renewable Energy potential in Pakistan.

The Session on Higher Education covered contextual background, demonstrated successes showcasing model partnerships with FoDP countries leading to future framework and opportunities in the higher education sector in Pakistan. The way forward for the advancement of higher education was also highlighted in the presentation.

The Session on Technical Education demonstrated the needs of Pakistan and existing possibilities of cooperation with the FoDP countries in the targeted areas.

In the Session on Security, presenters noted the existing security cooperation with FoDP members and proposed areas of cooperation. It was also noted that there is a scope for expanded assistance and partnerships.

In the Session on Governance, the presenters highlighted the need for institutional collaboration and partnerships between the public policy institutions of governance in Pakistan and their counterpart institutions in FoDP countries to develop institutional capacity building.

The Session on Democracy highlighted the demonstrated successes of exchanges between the Parliament of Pakistan and Parliaments in FoDP countries. The Session also discussed the engagement anchored in standing committees, parliamentary associations, women parliamentary caucuses and young parliamentary associations.

Way Forward

Based on deliberations and presentations made at the workshop, a roadmap will be prepared on priority areas for institution-capacity building led by Pakistan in the broader framework of institutional reforms. To this effect a Report on Cooperation on Institution- Capacity Building with the FODP members will be prepared by Pakistan.

The Working Group on Institution-Capacity Building will be convened in Islamabad on regular basis to prepare a draft of the FoDP Report on Cooperation on Institution-Capacity Building.

The report will be presented to the next Ministerial Meeting of the FoDP.

FoDP members are encouraged for match-making of their institutions with the respective institutions of Pakistan for sustained linkages to assist in achieving the objectives of institution-capacity building

Senator Syeda Sughra Imam and HE Ambassador Rauf Engin Soysal delivered their concluding remarks expressing their appreciation for the FoDP representatives and their fruitful contribution during deliberations in the Workshop. The representatives of FoDP thanked the Government Turkey for organizing the Workshop in Ankara and for making excellent arrangements.

For more information, contact:
Syed Haider Ali Jafri
Personal Secretary
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Government of Pakistan
Tel: +9251 921 0335 and 9056604