The President said in a journey from geo-strategic to geo-economic hub, Pakistan offered the shortest trade route for Central Asia and China.

President Dr Arif Alvi on Saturday said Pakistan besides defending its maritime borders would adopt a responsible strategy on blue economy for sustainable use of ocean resources in the benefit of mankind.

Addressing here at the inaugural session of 9th International Maritime Conference, the President said Pakistan was transforming into a geo-economic hub and taking effective steps on blue economy for improved livelihoods while preserving the health of the ocean ecosystem.

The Conference titled ‘Development of Blue Economy under a secure and sustainable environment’ aimed at analyzing various facets of ocean economy, and achieving common goals of maritime prosperity and security in the region.

The delegates from over 35 navies of the world gathered at the platform to discuss the opportunities provided under blue economy and suggest solutions based on emerging technology and innovations.

President Alvi emphasized the interest of mankind in renewable energy, fisheries, food security, transport, tourism and climate change, which he said, demanded an international cooperation to avoid exploitation of oceans.

He expressed satisfaction that Pakistan was heading towards a sustainable blue economy by giving importance to food security related to oceans.

He said 90 percent depletion of fish stock in the coastal areas of Pakistan was not recoverable and mentioned that similar was the case with the rest of the world.

“For blue economy to thrive, the world needs to bring an end to irresponsible exploitation of oceans,” he said.

The President stressed the need for ‘inverted pyramid’ with a serious paradigm shift required in the thinking of mankind to stop exploitation of waters.

“As an international community, we need a discipline to avert the threat to nature by reducing our footprint,” he told the gathering comprising representatives from world navies and international experts on oceans.

President Alvi said Pakistan would ensure its defence, but at the same time would promote morality based on cooperation among human kind.

The President said in a journey from geo-strategic to geo-economic hub, Pakistan offered the shortest trade route for Central Asia and China.

“Whether blue or brown economy, all depends upon peaceful cooperation which should lead to the common prosperity of the globe,” he said.

He said, “Hegemonic designs in any way hinder international cooperation. Ocean has the volume to be explored, but only in a responsible way.”

President Alvi assured unstinted cooperation of the government to the Pakistan Navy for pursuing the goals of regional peace and security.

Naval Chief Admiral Amjad Khan Niazi said Pakistan’s coastal areas were rich in biodiversity and offered immense scope for a blue economy.

He said China’s win-win strategy of China Pakistan Economic Corridor under the Belt and Road Initiative was mutually beneficial for both countries and also for the entire region.

Originally published at Daily Times