Pakistan, China agree to expand, accelerate CPEC
Beijing pledges an additional 500 million yuan in aid for flood relief; Shehbaz and Xi agree to complete all necessary procedures for the early opening of the Karachi Circular Railway; Kashmir and Afghanistan are also discussed; and the PM invites Chinese business leaders to invest in the government’s solar power project and alternative energy sources.
President Xi accepts invitation for upcoming trip to Islamabad
ISLAMABAD: China assured Pakistan on Wednesday that it would continue to support the nation’s sustainable economic and strategic projects, including the expansion of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and the Main Line-1 (ML-1) rail expand track, in addition to providing an additional aid package of RMB 500 million for the country’s flood relief efforts.
Chinese President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang reportedly made these assurances during separate meetings with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif at the People’s Great Hall in Beijing, according to the Prime Minister Office (PMO).
A number of agreements covering bilateral cooperation in the fields of e-commerce, the digital economy, agricultural product export, financial cooperation, cultural property protection, infrastructure, flood relief, post-disaster reconstruction, GDI, animal disease control, livelihood, cultural cooperation, space, geosciences, as well as law enforcement and security, were signed and finalised by the two sides.
Prime Minister Sharif returned to his country on Wednesday night after his two-day first visit to China was over.
In their discussion with President Xi, the two leaders reaffirmed their expand shared commitment to the CPEC and decided that, in order to expand start ML-1 as an early harvest project within the CPEC framework, both nations will work together.
They also agreed to complete all the necessary paperwork for the early opening of the Karachi Circular Railway, acknowledging the need for a public transit project in Karachi.
At the 20th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, Mr. Sharif congratulated President Xi on his reelection as the party’s general secretary. He also praised him for China’s important support of Pakistan’s rescue, recovery, and reconstruction efforts following the destruction brought on by the nation’s catastrophic floods.
The two leaders discussed regional and global problems of shared interest as well as the expand development of Sino-Pak bilateral relations.
They reiterated their dedication to the long-standing, all-weather strategic cooperation partnership between the two nations. In order to expand realise their common objective of peace, stability, progress, and prosperity, the two countries have stood resolutely side by side.
The friendship between Pakistan and China, which enjoys complete support from all political parties in Pakistan, was emphasised by Prime Minister Sharif as a role model for inter-state relations.
The prime minister said Pakistan took inspiration from China’s socioeconomic development and national resolve to the country’s progress and prosperity while paying thanks to President Xi’s leadership for China’s success and his vision for developing bilateral relationships.
The two leaders talked about ways to work together on a variety expand of areas, including defence, trade and investment, agriculture, health, and disaster preparedness.
They also discussed how the swift change in the global environment has made it more difficult for poorer nations to address their economic problems. They reaffirmed their common conviction that communication and collaboration based on respect and mutual gain are essential for world peace and development.
They concurred that governments must cooperate fully to address current issues like climate change, health pandemics, and escalating inequities in conformity with the goals and tenets of the United Nations Charter.
President Xi and Prime Minister Sharif also spoke about regional concerns, such as the conditions in Afghanistan and the Indian-controlled territory of Kashmir. They agreed that the extension of CPEC to Kabul will support regional connectivity projects and underlined that a peaceful and stable Afghanistan would enhance regional security and economic development.
President Xi kindly accepted the invitation the prime minister issued to him for a soon-to-be-scheduled visit to Pakistan.
Getting along with Chinese counterpart
In a meeting, PM Sharif and his Chinese colleague Li Keqiang decided to expand the CPEC in addition to assuring the prompt completion of projects related to the corridor. Premier Keqiang gave the PM a warm welcome at the People’s Great Hall, where he was given a guard of honour.
Additionally, the two sides held delegation-level discussions presided over by their respective leaders.
Additionally, PM Sharif met with Li Zhanshu, chairman of the National People’s Congress Standing Committee, to discuss bilateral issues and mutual cooperation.
Chinese companies are urged to invest
The PM also met with top Chinese businesses, which showed a strong interest in funding Pakistani infrastructure projects related to water, solar energy, and other areas.
The PMO reported that the prime minister gave a speech at the event and urged Chinese business leaders to Pakistan to invest in the nation’s extensive solar energy initiative, which aims to produce 10,000 megawatts of electricity. Additionally, he promoted Chinese investment in Pakistan’s renewable energy sources, such as wind farms.
The Chinese corporations promised to complete the infrastructure of the Gwadar International Airport by the beginning of next year, but Mr. Sharif insisted on its completion as soon as possible.
Additionally, PM Sharif said that since taking office in April, the government has settled a number of business-related concerns and paid a total of Rs160 billion in back taxes to Chinese investors and companies. He added that the State Bank of Pakistan had created a revolving fund with a seed investment of Rs. 50 billion at the direction of Finance Minister Ishaq Dar.
He promised to take immediate action to address the problems with acquiring land for the construction of the Diamer Basha Dam and other obstacles standing in the way of finishing the Mohmand Dam.
Shehbaz further stated that Chinese employees working in Pakistan will have perfect protection, adding that individuals assigned to the CPEC would enjoy all-encompassing security.
The premier stated that the federal government and the Sindh government were prepared to expand work together with Chinese businesses to address the water deficit in Karachi.
prioritising foreign policy
Later, the Chinese side emphasised in a joint statement that it would always give relations with Pakistan top priority in its foreign policy. The Pakistani side emphasised that the friendship between the two nations was always backed by the Pakistani people and that expand it was the cornerstone of its foreign policy.
Pakistan also expand emphasised its support for the concerns of Taiwan, the South China Sea, Hong Kong, Xinjiang, and Tibet as well as its commitment to the One-China Policy. The Chinese side reiterated its support for Pakistan’s territorial integrity, sovereignty, and security as well as for its socioeconomic growth and prosperity.