PESHAWAR, November 27: Prime Minister Mr. Nawaz Sharif has said Pakistan wishes peace in the region and that all countries should make joint efforts to eliminate poverty, illiteracy, diseases and unemployment.

Addressing a conference of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) in the Nepalese capital, Kathmandu, Mr. Nawaz Sharif said trade volume among the SAARC countries needed to be expanded. He said the SAARC countries should facilitate visas for each other in order to boost trade in the region. The prime minister also emphasised on collective efforts to counter terrorism in South Asia.

Representatives from Pakistan, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Bhutan and Maldives are participating in the two-day SAARC Summit.

Mr. Nawaz Sharif is expected to meet leaders of various countries at the event. According to Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry, there is no meeting planned between the prime minister and his Indian counterpart Mr. Narendra Modi.

Media reports say Nepalese authorities have spent about $10 million to decorate Kathmandu city ahead of the SAARC Summit. A two-day public holiday has also been announced to avert traffic issues.

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