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It gives me immense pleasure to extend warm felicitations, on behalf of the Government and People of Pakistan, to the Peoples and Governments of all SAARC Member States on the occasion of the Thirtieth Anniversary of SAARC and the Thirty-first SAARC Charter Day, falling on 8th December 2015. Pakistan joins other SAARC member states in celebrating this important landmark in the history of the organization.

The SAARC Charter, signed 30 years ago, has played an important role in bringing the SAARC member states closer to each other, and this day provides us a good opportunity to renew our commitment to the Charter and its principles and objectives.

SAARC has withstood the test of time, and gradually its states are making progress on important social and economic issues like poverty alleviation, education, trade and commerce, energy cooperation, and human resource development. Pakistan believes that the potential for regional socioeconomic integration by SAARC has not been fully utilized, and that the organization can deliver much larger benefits for all its member states if a more proactive approach is adopted.

One of the key objectives underlying SAARC is to enhance trust and understanding amongst its members. The need of the hour is to continue our concerted endeavors to build upon this objective in order to promote the welfare of the peoples of South Asia in all spheres of regional interest.

Pakistan remains firmly committed to the principle of the SAARC Charter, and we shall continue to play our role in furthering the objectives of the organization for the welfare of the South Asian nations.

I wish all the people of the SAARC region, happiness, peace and prosperity.

8 December 2015

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