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Pak PM Imran Khan to Meet Prez Putin in Russia; Aims to Enhance Economic Ties

The two countries are expected to ink several deals during Khan's visit, including a $2 billion pipeline.

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Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan will meet Russian President Vladimir Putin during the former's visit to Russia on Wednesday, 23 February, news agency PTI reported.

The meeting comes amid an impending global crisis sparked by the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

The two countries are expected to ink several deals during Khan's visit, including a contract involving Russian investment for a $2 billion pipeline in Pakistan.

A Russian delegation had visited Pakistan recently to negotiate tax exemptions regarding the Pakistan Gas Stream Project, as per reports by PTI.

Khan's visit will be the first time a Pakistani PM is visiting Russia in 23 years. The last visit was by former Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif after the end of the Cold War.
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Pakistan had also expressed desire to sign a commercial agreement with Russia as well as an agreement on a gas pipeline from the Central-Asian nation of Kazakhstan.

In April 2021, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had visited Islamabad after almost nine years. During the visit, he conveyed a message to PM Imran Khan that Moscow was willing to help Islamabad in all possible ways.

Pakistan's Economy in Trouble

This meeting comes as Pakistan's economy is in a poor state, facing crippling inflation.

Pakistan has been attempting to reach out to several countries to boost ties and trade relations after being brushed aside by the United States (US).

This has also led the investment-starved country to move closer to US rivals China and Russia.

Pakistan has also remained on the Financial Action Task Force's (FATF) grey list since June 2018 due to its repeated failures in putting an end to the activities of United Nations-designated terror groups operating out of Pakistan.

(With inputs from PTI.)

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