- Web Desk
Pakistan, Saudi Arabia sign Air Services Agreement
- Web Desk
- Aug 22, 2023
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia have officially entered into an Air Services Agreement (ASA) with the shared objective of boosting the frequency of flights between the two nations.
Heading a delegation on a four-day visit to Pakistan, Saudi Hajj and Umra Dr Taufeeq bin Fawzan Al-Rabiya, who also chairs the administrative board of the two Holy Mosques, engaged in discussions that resulted in the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU).
During a joint press conference, Al-Rabiya said the the expected increase of flights connecting the countries will lead to reduced travel expenses for passengers.
The discussions between the Saudi delegation and Pakistan’s Religious Affairs Minister primarily centered on enhancing facilities for Pakistani visitors. The Hajj minister shared Saudi Arabia’s intent to welcome a larger number of Pakistani visitors this year. He said this will build upon the substantial influx observed in the previous year.
In efforts to enhance the pilgrimage experience, Al-Rabiya announced the opening of eight historical sites in Madinah. He revealed plans to unveil around 100 more sites in Makkah and Madinah in the near future.
He emphasized Saudi Arabia’s commitment to improving pilgrim services by fostering competition among companies, thereby elevating the quality of services and lowering costs.
As part of these endeavors, the Nasuk exhibition, a comprehensive platform for organizing Hajj or Umrah itineraries, is set to be inaugurated in Karachi. This platform facilitates travelers in arranging their entire visit, from acquiring eVisas to booking accommodations and flights.
Pakistan also requested an exemption from fingerprinting for pilgrims above the age of 65. This is due to challenges in fingerprint recognition for senior citizens.
Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar also praised Saudi’s Hajj arrangements for global pilgrims and hoped for continued support for Pakistani pilgrims.