ISLAMABAD: A delegation of university representatives from Morocco, which is on a three-

day visit to Pakistan, met Prof. Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed, Chairman Higher Education Commission

and senior management of HEC at the Commission Secretariat.

The delegation included President University of Fez, President University Hassan II in

Casablanca, Omar Assobhei Driss Mansouri and Acting Dean of the Faculty of Letters and

Sciences, Dhar El Mehraz, Abdelilah Benmlih. Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed welcomed the delegates and

presented an overview of HECs initiatives and achievements during last 13 years. He explained

how governments commitment helped to develop higher education sector and a considerable

increase in funding has brought remarkable changes in the sector.

The chairman said that primary focus of HEC has remained towards increasing access to quality

higher education as around 65 per cent of population is below the age of 25 years. “We believe

that investment in our youth will lead to development of human resource in all disciplines

ultimately helping in socio-economic uplift of the country. HEC has initiated a number of

programmes for faculty, research scholars and students to harness their potential.”

Dr. Mukhtar said that over 200,000 people have benefitted from different scholarship schemes

during the last 10 years. “Areas having direct impact on countrys socio-economic growth have

been prioritized. Encouraging and funding innovative and relevant research, entrepreneurship,

ensuring adherence to quality assurance criteria, developing physical and technological

infrastructure, improving governance at universities are some of the key areas where HEC has

put its maximum effort,” he said.

He said that Morocco and Pakistan enjoy a brotherly relationship. Both the countries may start

institution to institution collaboration, exchange programmes for faculty, staff and students as

well as joint academic and research programmes. He said that a delegation of Pakistani Vice

Chancellors may visit Morocco to explore opportunities for collaboration and benefitting from

each others expertise. He also mentioned that next VCs Forum of the Islamic countries will be

held in Rabat early next year.

The Moroccan delegates appreciated the hospitality of Pakistani people and agreed that

cooperation in higher education will play a key role in bringing governments and people of the

two nations closer to each other. They said both the countries have many challenges of similar

nature and joint research projects will be of great help for both sides.

It was agreed that there was political willingness on both the sides that makes it much easier for

planning and execution of joint academic and research programmes. During their stay, the

delegation will visit different higher education institutions in the twin cities.

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