Speech by the Prime Minister at the induction ceremony PNS Aslat

September 03, 2013

 

Mr. Wang Dieje Assistant President of China Shipbuilding Trading Company,
Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral Mohammad Asif Sandila NI (M),
Excellencies Distinguished Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen

Assalam-o-Alakum


 It is indeed a matter of immense pleasure for me to be here today at the induction ceremony of first ever indigenously constructed frigate with the collaboration of our Chinese friends. I profoundly thank Chief of the Naval Staff for inviting me on this historic occasion.
Ladies and Gentlemen
A ship as magnificent as the one standing before us today is undoubtedly a product of years of concerted and dedicated efforts. It is therefore truly a historic day, not only for the ship construction yards of the two countries but also for Pakistan and China.
Ladies and Gentlemen
I am pleased to learn that construction of ASLAT was completed will within the contractual timeline. Bringing all four Frigates into service within eight years is a remarkable achievement for a programme of this complexity and scale. I commend the dedicated workers, engineers, technicians of Karachi and Hudong shipyards for their hard work, professionalism and dedication. Your efforts have made this day possible. I would also like to appreciate the contribution of Ministry of Defence Production and Project Directorate at Naval Headquarters, who have worked purposefully to make this programme a success. Here I want to thank the entire team of China Shipbuilding Trading Company for their support particularly Mr. Wang Dieje Assistant President of China Shipbuilding Trading Company for his profound interest, extreme dedication and expert handling of the construction of fourth frigate in Pakistan. 
Ladies and Gentlemen
Pakistan and China share a close and time tested relationship that stretches back to the 1950s. Pakistan views its relationship with China as enduring, multidimensional and deep rooted, which has always stood the test of times. The extent of strength, cooperation, mutual trust and respect of this all weather friendship has been best described by the Ex-Chinese Premier Hu Jintao as “higher than the highest mountains and deeper than the deepest oceans”. It therefore goes without saying that Pakistan’s foreign relations with China form a pillar of Pakistan’s foreign Policy. Pakistan deeply values the resolute Chinese support and cooperation in all domains. Construction of F-22P Frigate at Karachi Shipyard under transfer of technology arrangement is a testament of the everlasting bond of friendship that exists between China and Pakistan. I am confident that the defence cooperation between the two countries will grow from strength to strength in years to come and will be a source of improving peace, security and stability in the region. Here I would also like to acknowledge Chinese cooperation in development of Gwadar Deep Water Port which has strengthened the maritime infrastructure in Pakistan and opened new vistas of economic growth and prosperity in Baluchistan. I am sure that the port will become a major game changer vis-à-vis the trade and the economy of the region when rail and road routes from Makran coast to the Western region of China through Khunjrab are developed.
Ladies and Gentlemen
Pakistan is located at cross roads of major civilizations and trade routes. It’s geo-strategic and geo-economic importance in the present times demand concerted efforts with regards to regional and global security. We are therefore engaged and are contributing effectively to fight the forces that are out to destabilize and destroy international order. I appreciate the efforts of Pakistan navy in safeguarding Arabian Sea- the conduit for vital shipping lanes that are jugular veins of global economy. Pakistan Navy’s efforts in combating international terrorism and piracy despite limited number of ships are indeed commendable. 

Ladies and Gentlemen

The strategic location of Pakistan can only be exploited to our advantage through development of maritime sector and capable navy for its effective defence and acting as a source of security for international trade plying off our coast. The government is fully cognizant of the needs of Pakistan Navy and the Maritime sector and I assure you that the government will explore all avenues to enhance their capabilities.
               
Ladies & Gentlemen

Warships are nothing more than just a metal structure. It is their crew that gives them heart and soul. To the officers and sailors who will sail in this ship, I would like to say that, as commissioning crew you are the most important people that this ship will ever have. You will set the course for this ship for her operational life. Excellence can be your only standard and I know that you will uphold these standards for others to emulate, inshahulah. In doing so, let yourselves be guided by the sense of duty, strength and the fortitude of your forbearers”.
In the end, I would like to thank the Chief of the Naval Staff once again for inviting me to this wonderful ceremony. My sincere prayers for ASLAT and all those who sail in her. My ALLAH be with ASLAT and her crew in all their future endeavors. Ameen

I thank you all

Long Live Pak China Friendship

Pakistan Navy Zindabad, Pakistan Paindabad