Pakistan & China ties beneficial for whole region, Xi tells Imran Khan

PM Khan thanks Chinese President, government and people of China for their warm sentiments; PM Imran Khan also receives President AIIB Jin Liqun and Minister IDCPC Song Tao Friday

Khan extends invitation to President Xi Jinping to visit Pakistan;
China promises support as Khan tells of ‘very difficult’ economy;
Pakistan may get $6bn financial support from China, tell sources

BEIJING: Chinese President Xi Jinping has said Pakistan and China relationship has not only benefited the two countries but also the region.

He made the remarks during a meeting with Prime Minister Imran Khan at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing Friday.

The two leaders reviewed the Pakistan-China bilateral relations and held in-depth discussions on regional and global issues of mutual interest.

President Xi Jinping congratulated Prime Minister Imran Khan on his election and assumption of office.

He noted that Pakistan-China relations have already been strengthening, and now gained momentum.

President Xi underscored to the Prime Minister firm commitment to strengthen Pakistan-China Strategic Cooperative Partnership for Shared Future in the New Era. He reiterated China’s steadfast support to Pakistan on all issues of core interest.

The two leaders also discussed regional and global issues of mutual interest and agreed to work closely towards overcoming growing political-economic uncertainties. He underscored that Pakistan stands by
China in safeguarding mutual interests, shared ideals and promoting multilateralism.

Prime Minister Imran Khan thanked the Chinese President, government and the people of China for their warm sentiments. He congratulated them on the 40th anniversary of “Reform and Opening-up”, which has resulted in China’s meteoric rise. He stressed that friendship with China is the cornerstone of

Pakistan’s foreign policy and expressed the earnest desire of his government to further consolidate this relationship.

The Prime Minister emphasized that President Xi’s vision of connectivity – Belt and Road, and its flagship project CPEC, would translate into a win-win for shared prosperity in the region and beyond. They reviewed the progress of CPEC, expressed satisfaction on its achievements, and undertook for its early completion to maximize the benefits for Pakistan.

Prime Minister extended an invitation to President Xi Jinping to visit Pakistan. President Xi accepted the invitation. He was accompanied by Foreign Minister, Finance Minister, Minister for Railways, Minister for Planning, Advisor to PM on Commerce and Chief Minister Balochistan. The Prime Minister is visiting China from 2-5 November 2018 on his first official visit to China.

China promised to support Pakistan’s economy on Friday as Prime Minister Imran Khan told of his country’s “very difficult” economic situation amid a burgeoning financial crisis. The two leaders reviewed the Pakistan-China bilateral relations and held in-depth discussions on regional and global issues of mutual interest, a private television channel reported.

Meeting Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing’s Great Hall of the People, Khan said he’d come to China to learn. “My party has only been in power for two months. Unfortunately we have inherited a very difficult economic situation,” Khan said.

Xi told Khan that he highly valued the two country’s relations, reaffirming they were “all-weather” friends. “I attach great importance to China-Pakistan relations and am willing to work together with the prime minister to strengthen the China-Pakistan all-weather strategic partnership and build a new era of China-Pakistan destiny,” Xi said.

The Chinese government’s top diplomat, State Councillor Wang Yi, told Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi in a separate meeting that China would not let Pakistan down. “The Chinese side will continue to provide support and help to the best of its ability for Pakistan’s economic and social development and national construction,” China’s Foreign Ministry cited Wang as saying, without giving details.

Meanwhile, China is expected to provide Pakistan $6billion financial support while agreement in this regard could be reached during Prime Minister Imran Khan’s ongoing visit to China.
According to a private television channel report, out of the total $6 billion, $3 billion would be given to

Pakistan for the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), while $1.5 billion each would be doled out in grant, and loan.

PM Imran Khan was given warm welcome upon his arrival in Beijing earlier in the day. Khan also met the Chinese President, Xi Jinping, and discussed the matters of mutual interest.
Khan said the vision and leadership of Jinping was the role model for China. He stated that Pakistan was extremely impressed with the progress and development in China.

He said the way China tackled poverty and corruption was a role model for Pakistan. ‘None of the countries in the world worked like China to overcome the challenges in face of poverty and corruption’, he remarked.

PM Khan said relations between China and Pakistan would further strengthen after bilateral visits. He added that the strong bonding between the two countries was favourable for the entire region.
PM Imran said Pakistan could learn from China more than any other country and Chinese experiences would help improve the issues the country was currently facing. Pakistan’s premier also extended an invitation to the Chinese president to visit Pakistan.

Meanwhile, Jin Liqun, President of Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) called on Prime Minister Imran Khan in Beijing Friday.
The Prime Minister stated that, as a founding member of the AIIB, Pakistan fully supports the Bank’s mission. The AIIB had achieved good results in a very short span of time since its establishment in 2016 and was financing projects in Pakistan. Pakistan looks forward to strengthening its cooperation with the AIIB.

The Prime Minister informed President AIIB that his government had prioritized economic revival and structural reforms. The government is also making all-out efforts for poverty alleviation.
The Prime Minister underscored that several cooperation opportunities existed in Pakistan’s power generation and transmission, transport, water supply sectors. The Prime Minister welcomed AIIB to explore projects in these areas.

President Jin stated that the AIIB was committed to supporting projects in Pakistan. AIIB would actively engage with Pakistan to review project proposals and look forward to playing its role in Pakistan’s economic development, while upholding the shared principles of openness transparency, independence and accountability. It was also agreed to expedite disbursements for projects in the pipeline.

Meanwhile, Song Tao, Minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee (IDCPC) called on Prime Minister Imran Khan in Beijing Friday.

Prime Minister recalled that Mr. Song’s visit to Pakistan in October had cemented bilateral relationship and fostered greater mutual understanding. Pakistan attaches importance to relations with China, and was committed to enhancing cooperation across the board.

The Prime Minister noted that the goodwill amongst the peoples of Pakistan and China provided firm basis for the Pakistan-China All-Weather Strategic Cooperative Partnership for Shared Future. As the representatives of their respective nations, relations between the ruling parties in both countries were of paramount importance.

Pakistan fully shared the IDCPC’s mission of promoting people to people contacts, including exchanges between political parties, academia, media, youth, women and think tanks. These exchanges would ensure that the exceptional friendship between Pakistan and China endures from generation to generation.

Song stated that the Prime Minister’s first official visit to China since assuming office was in keeping with the time-honoured traditions of the special friendship between Pakistan and China. He reaffirmed that the IDCPC would always play its role in strengthening Pakistan-China relations, which have always enjoyed a special place in China’s international relations. – NNI

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