Strengthening Partnership on Pakistan ICIMOD Day

27 Nov 2014, Islamabad, Pakistan and Kathmandu, Nepal


Today the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) and the Ministry of National Food Security and Research (MNFS&R) came together at the National Agricultural Research Centre for a joint celebration of Pakistan-ICIMOD Day. The occasion was graced by the Honourable Sardar Sikander Hayat Khan Bosan, Federal Minister for MNFS&R, who pledged Pakistan’s continuing support to ICIMOD for its mission to serve mountain and people. The Minister said that the government was working on policy development and responses to address the effects of climate change that is taking place in the mountain areas of Pakistan. These policies will help to fulfil national and international commitments while benefiting the people of these underdeveloped areas. He thanked ICIMOD for its capacity development work, which will help mitigate the effects of climate change. He also acknowledged ICIMOD’s role in discussing transboundary issues and promoting dialogue within the region. 

The key objectives of the Pakistan-ICIMOD Day were to provide a platform for mutual learning, sharing, and networking opportunities, to showcase works of ICIMOD’s partners in Pakistan and to enhance partnership to mobilize support for sustainable development challenges. The event was attended by parliamentarians and secretaries from ministries of the Government of Pakistan, and ICIMOD’s Board Members from its eight regional member countries of the Hindu Kush Himalayan (HKH) region (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, India, Myanmar, Nepal, and Pakistan), donors, experts, as well as high ranking government officials, representatives of NGOs and ICIMOD’s network of cooperation partners in Pakistan. 

ICIMOD is a regional organization that works with partners in Pakistan to influence mountain development policies and practices and to foster regional cooperation. The event provided a unique opportunity to promote dialogue between parliamentarians and ICIMOD, its international Board Members and its Pakistani partners. Dr David Molden, Director General of ICIMOD, said that the event provided an opportunity to shape the direction of ICIMOD’s work in Pakistan to ensure that ICIMOD is supporting the development of Pakistan’s mountain areas in the best possible ways.  Dr Molden emphasised the mountain development challenges in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region and ICIMOD’s role in addressing these challenges through knowledge sharing.

In his keynote speech, Mr Seerat Asghar, Secretary of MNFS&R, highlighted the food and livelihood issues in the Hindu Kush Himalayan part of Pakistan. He stated that the event was a perfect occasion for strengthening Pakistan’s partnership with ICIMOD and aligning this with the country’s national development priorities. Dr Iftikar Ahmed, Chairman of Pakistan Agricultural Research Council, said that the wide network of partners reflects a robust partnership between Pakistan and ICIMOD. He stressed the importance of mountain-specific development, saying that if the periphery mountain areas were strong then the centre would be strong, too.  He made an impassioned plea to parliamentarians to help develop mountain areas, and acknowledged ICIMOD’s role in enhancing Pakistan’s communication with its regional neighbours.

On behalf of ICIMOD, Mr Basanta Shrestha, Director of Strategic Cooperation at ICIMOD, thanked ICIMOD’s focal Ministry and partner organizations in Pakistan for their coordination and support. ICIMOD has more than 25 different partners in Pakistan. These partnerships demonstrate a collective endeavour in various areas related to mountain development. 

Dr Mohammed Azeem Khan, Director General National Agricultural Centre, said that he felt honoured to host Pakistan ICIMOD Day in the NARC complex and that the event would greatly contribute in increasing the ownership and visibility of ICIMOD’s work in Pakistan as well as in building new partnerships.

For more information, please contact:
Ms Nira Gurung, Senior Communications Officer, ICIMOD
Tel. +977 1 5003222, Ext 115