Posted by: Administrator | 18 August, 2006

President at International Defence Exhibition Seminar 2006

21 November 2006, Karachi

The Federal Minister for Defence, Minister for Defence Production, Senate Chairman, Governor Sindh, CM Sindh, all the Service Chiefs, Chairman of Joint Staff Committee, General Officers, ladies and gentlemen, specially to delegates from abroad coming from so many countries to grace this occasion. I welcome specially, all our friends the delegates, who have come from abroad, I hope you have a comfortable stay in Pakistan. I hope you would take back very profound memories of your stay in Pakistan. And I also hope at the same time that you have a commercially beneficial visit to Pakistan and participation in IDEAS 2006. I would like to commend the efforts of EPO and its Chairman for organizing this exhibition. I would be remiss if did not also commend the Chairman of PEGASUS for organizing this event. Since the year 2000, this is the fourth exhibition he is organizing. I would like to specially commend Chairman PEGASUS efforts and effort of his organization for doing such an excellent job over so many years. I would also like to take the opportunity to express gratitude to the Defence Production Division and its Ministry the Ministry of Defence and the Minister of Defence, Ministry of Commerce and also the Government of Sindh for encouraging and facilitating such an event of this scale.

Ladies and gentlemen, the idea of IDEAS 2006 Exhibition came to us back in 2000. I thought we need to project our defence industry to the world, because I thought it was a well kept secret, no-body knows that we have progressed reasonably well in defence production and thus we started this and since then I would like to say that we have come a very long way.

We have travelled a long distance. I remember when in the year 2000, we thought of this venue; I remembered the air conditioners here were not working at that time. The lifts were not working, non functional. There was total encroachment in the land here. It was the Army which put it in order and that is how we started journey in year 2000 of these IDEAS exhibition. But since then I am very proud and I am very happy to see that it has expanded so much that so many delegates, foreigners and participants are coming. Such an expansion in the infrastructure of this EXPO centre, it is indeed a heart warming to see all that. That speaks volume of effort that all these organisations have together made but I must say that there was no exhibition in 2000 were used to be take place here. Today we are proud of the fact that there are dozens of exhibition, which go on, every year here. In fact this centre is so busy that it doesn’t have breathing space within. This is the success of our exhibition, not only organizing these exhibitions but in contributing to the commercial activity of Pakistan, within Pakistan of show casing our products and also giving an opportunity to show case international projects here for the purpose of imports or exports from Pakistan or to Pakistan. And for this again I think Asim Sadiqee needs all the encouragement.

Let me say ladies and gentlemen, talking of defence, Pakistan follows a strategy of defensive deterrence. Which implies there by that we have quantified our requirements, our weaponry for our Army, Navy and Air force to deter any aggression. This was in a conventional mode but when the threat grew unconventional, we had to rectify the imbalance and therefore we also went unconventional. So therefore today our strategy of defensive deterrence in the conventional field and the unconventional field is both in place in strength and is growing from strength to strength every year. This idea of “Arms for Peace” therefore is very valid we want to use our arms for peace. Because it is for defensive deterrence, but I want to clarify here we believe in peace through strength not peace through weakness, so that is the peace we want and that is the peace we follow and therefore our strategy of defensive deterrence ensuring peace through strength.

Our past experiences ladies and gentlemen, showed that we have to indigenise our defensive products and also diversify our market for purchases. In the beginning we had excellent collaboration with Afro Asian countries but that was mainly in the training field, exchange of training visits, exchange of training students, in our centres of military training. For those centres, Pakistan is proud to have a vast operational experience and therefore our military training centres are well organised, are extremely practical and I think they are a source of excellent training not only to officers of all ranks of Pakistan forces but also impart training to overseas officers and NCOs. Now we want to go a step further and this is our desire since 2000, we want collaboration in defence production through joint ventures and we also off course sell our products and buy products internationally. And that is the utility of that exhibition where international players can show case their products, at the same time they can see our products.

Pakistan is extremely proud of its association in defence production with China, with France, with Ukraine; this includes joint ventures and collaboration in defence production. This collaboration has resulted in major successes, If I was to enumerate just few of them, I think the first success came in the production of our battle tank Al Khalid MBT-2000. This tank, we are very proud of and this tank was produced under 10 years. Which is some type of a record in producing a new tank, generally takes much longer. And I am very proud to say this is one of the best tanks of the world. I have been seeing its demonstration and when it was under trial, this tank in its all field trials has been achieving in all its accuracy in fire not only static but moving target and moving tank of over 70 percent. It has all the latest technology of any tank on this tank. I am very glad that I was just talking to Commanders 5-Corps who has just attended the field exercises of one of his divisions and one of the units which is equipped with this tank and he told me that they have achieved accuracy results over 80 percent and this is no mean achievement for a unit which is recently been given this tank. So this has been a great success story of ours and may I say when seen from the point of view of its cost effectiveness when you compare other tanks of the world of this class, the price of this tank is certainly cost effectiveness.

The other success is the Zarar Tank, the up gradation of the older T-Series tanks and now it is a modern tank that we have made, then in the air-force the K-8 jet trainer is our success story, the Augusta B-19 submarine which we co produce here now with France is our success story. And if we look at the future, the JF-17 fighter aircraft, high technology, Inshallah will be flown on the 23 March next time in the skies of Pakistan. This is our success story. Inshallah we will be producing F-22 P frigates for the Navy in Pakistan. This is our success story. And we are also into the UAV projects, this is just to say of few of the major successes of joint ventures and collaboration with other countries and we are very proud of this and that is why I say the defensive deterrence strategy of Pakistan Armed Forces is in place and will carry on growing on from strength to strength.

May I also add to this International audience that Pakistan Armed Forces greatest strength is in the fact that we are familiar with all types of equipment of the world, whether it is Western, we are familiar with US equipment, British equipment, French equipment and many other countries equipment or if it is Eastern equipment we are experts, also, Chinese, Russian or Korean equipment and now we have added the Ukrainian into the field also, the T80UD tanks which we have from Ukraine, the Ukrainian delegation is here, may I say we are extremely grateful and we cherish the association with Ukraine in this tank project. This is our strength. And we desire to expand our collaboration and build on this strength that the Pakistan have of varied equipment and mastering the expertise in this varied equipment.

I would, ladies and gentlemen be remiss if I say the greatest enemy in the way of defence of any commercial or economic activity or progress, is extremism and terrorism. This is a curse for the whole World and especially so for the Muslim world and therefore I always talk about it. I always say that the way forward is enlightened moderation where we have to reject extremism and terrorism. We have to go on the path of socio economic development for our own sack for the sack of this country, which we love so much, and for the sack of the Muslim world which is so dear to us being an important part of it and also for the sack of humanity. We have to reject extremism and terrorism. We have to fight it and Pakistan is fighting in the forefront.

Pakistan is the key player in fighting terrorism and extremism and we are fighting it militarily, we are fighting it politically, we are fighting it administratively and also we are also fighting it in the form of development activity so we have a multi phases approach towards fighting terrorism and extremism. We have to fight it and we have to win and Inshallah with determination Pakistan will win against extremism and terrorism because the way forward for Pakistan is moderation, socio-economic development and sustaining the economic up serge that we already have here today in Pakistan.

In conclusion I would again like to wish well for all the foreign delegates who are here and as I said I wish you success in your commercial desires I wish you a happy and successful stay in Pakistan. I felicitate all those who made this event so successful. On my own behalf the only thing I can say is that I always enjoy visiting IDEAS, this exhibition. Always enjoy interacting with the foreign delegations who are here personally and I will always continue to support and back this exhibition in the future also, I thank you all ladies and gentlemen.

Pakistan Paindabad!

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