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'US to help Pak meet its energy shortfall'

The Obama Administration would help Pakistan in addressing the issue of chronic energy shortfall, which has been resulting in hours of unscheduled power cuts across the country.

world Updated: Oct 07, 2009 07:43 IST

The Obama Administration would help Pakistan in addressing the issue of chronic energy shortfall, which has been resulting in hours of unscheduled power cuts across the country.

US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, yesterday announced that a high-level team of experts from State Department would soon visit Pakistan to hold discussions with the Pakistani officials in this regard.

"I am pleased to announce that later this month, David Goldwyn, the State Department's coordinator for international energy engagement, will lead a government team for a dialogue with the Pakistani Government on energy policy and investment in the energy sector to address Pakistan's chronic energy shortfalls," Clinton said at a joint press conference with Pakistani Foreign Minister, Shah Mehmood Qureshi.

After the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal, Pakistan has been insisting on a similar agreement with the US to address the issue of energy shortage in the country, but US has refused to ink such a deal with Pakistan in view of the non-proliferation issues.

Looking forward to her upcoming trip to Pakistan, Clinton said her visit would come at a time when the two countries are deepening their cooperation and partnership.

"We intend to work with the Government of Pakistan to learn what is really needed and desired by the people of Pakistan to help promote innovations like mobile banking or increased microcredit. Really, I'm in public service because I want people to have a chance to live up to their own God-given abilities. And what we see in a common vision is to enhance the prospects for the children of Pakistan," Clinton said after meeting Qureshi.

"We have been working together in an integrated and unified effort that extends beyond our governments to include cooperation with civil society, with the private sector, and with the very vibrant Pakistani-American community here in the United States," she said.

"We are stepping up our efforts to engage directly with the Pakistani people through educational and cultural exchanges, English language programs, scholarships, and professional linkages," Clinton added.

Qureshi said the relationship between Pakistan and US has been growing and deepening. "It's a growing partnership. And we have discussed other avenues of cooperation. And the Secretary has just mentioned energy being one. That's a forward step. The statement the co-chairs made on the 24th September, talks of market access, that's another way forward. So I think we are looking towards a long-term relationship," he said.