ISLAMABAD - Ambassador of Indonesia to Pakistan, Adam Mulawarman Tugio on Tuesday said the cultural and religious links between Indonesia and Pakistan play an important role in the economic integration of both countries.

Indonesia and Pakistan have been linked for centuries by a historical cultural, religious and shared cultural heritage, which is deeply rooted in history, he said. The Indonesian embassy in Islamabad is organising a five-day cultural exhibition starting from July 20th to strengthen religio-cultural and civilisational relations between Pakistan and Indonesia, the ambassador of Indonesia told media here. The ambassador said the cultural conference will be held under the auspices of the Indonesian Embassy Islamabad and Lok Virsa on the theme of “A Confluence of Civilisation between Indonesia and Pakistan”. He said that this five-day cultural exhibition will be held at Shakarparian, Lok Virsa Islamabad. The ambassador said the purpose of cultural exhibition was to bring Pakistan and Indonesia closer culturally and to introduce the new generation with their heritage.

He said that Pakistan and Indonesia were connected in historical cultural, religious and civilisational ties, which have deep roots in history. Ambassador Adam said that Islam came to Indonesia through the efforts of South Asian spice traders who have been coming to Indonesia for the purpose of trade for hundreds of years.

He said that Indonesia is a Muslim-majority country like Pakistan and there are wide opportunities for cultural and commercial integration in both countries. He said that the need for interfaith diplomacy in both countries is very important through which many goals of improving mutual relations can be achieved. The ambassador said that Indonesia always values its relationship with Pakistan and both countries have deep economic and trade relations. He said that there is an annual trade of $4 billion between the two countries, which needs to be further increased. Pakistan and Indonesia have vast opportunities for the promotion of education, he said, adding that Indonesia gave most of the scholarships to Pakistani students this year.

It is pertinent to mention that the exhibition intends to feature the fusion of Indonesia-Pakistan’s cultural history and artworks through a selected collection of photographs and videos, which will shed light on the inter-regional connectivity and cross-cultural influence during the course of history of respective countries. The exhibition aims to offer fresh perspectives into historical connections, religious backgrounds, and the confluence of civilisation of both countries from past to present. The exhibition will highlight the religious-cultural influence and similarities between the two countries during their journey of civilisation through the display of art works.