LONDON: Caretaker Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani chaired the 10th Commonwealth Youth Ministers’ Meeting in London wherein he emphasized the Commonwealth’s role in charting youth engagement in the global sustainable development agenda.
Addressing the meeting held from September 12-15, 2023, the foreign minister said that youth comprised 60 percent of the Commonwealth’s population which was their biggest asset. This was the first time in 30 years that Pakistan chaired a Commonwealth event.
Youth Ministers from more than 45 Commonwealth states participated in the meeting, which was held as part of the Commonwealth’s commemoration of 2023 as the “Year of Youth.”
The participants also deliberated on the critical need to create opportunities for young people so they could fully realize their potential.
Foreign Minister Jilani briefed the participants about the Government of Pakistan’s flagship Youth Project, “Prime Minister’s Youth Programme” which had completed 10 years.
He said that the program closely aligned with the objectives set under the four Es of the Commonwealth Youth Programme i.e. Engagement, Education, Employment, and Environment.
He told the international gathering that the Government of Pakistan had reaffirmed its commitment to youth development for the current financial year by allocating projects worth Rs80 billion by making specific commitments under each of the 4Es.
On the CWYMM sidelines, the foreign minister held bilateral meetings with the Commonwealth Secretary General and youth ministers of Sri Lanka, Rwanda, Jamaica, and Samoa.
He also attended receptions by the Commonwealth Secretary General, London Mayor and Pakistan High Commission in London. A resplendent display of Pakistan’s vibrant colours and intricate designs was showcased at the CWYMM venue in traditional Truck Art scooters and blue pottery that was well appreciated by the participants.
Pakistan attaches great significance to the Commonwealth and remains committed to continuing its close engagement with the organization. Pakistan’s High Commissioner Dr. Mohammad Faisal also attended the meetings.
FM Jilani meets Prince Edward;
Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani had an audience with Prince Edward, Duke of Edinburgh here at St James’s Palace, reinforcing Pak-UK friendship.
The two sides exchanged views about the existing frateral ties between Pakistan and the United Kingdom.
The Foreign Minister conveyed good wishes from the government and people of Pakistan to Prince Edward.
Prince Edward, the Duke of Edinburgh expressed his goodwill for the government and people of Pakistan. The Duke of Edinburgh also offered condolences for the lives lost during last year’s devastating floods in Pakistan.