ISLAMABAD, Mar 2 (APP):Minister for Foreign Affairs Shah Mehmood Qureshi Tuesday said the all weather, strategic and cooperative relationship of Pakistan and China was an anchor of peace, stability and development in the region.
Speaking at the launch of celebrations to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between Pakistan and China, he recalled that the diplomatic relations of the two countries were formally established on May 21,1951.
“Since then the ties have grown from strength to strength. “I am proud to say that we were among one of the first few countries which recognized the Peoples Republic of China, which was established after a remarkable and valiant struggle, on October 1, 1949,” he added.
The minister said today’s China had passed through a miraculous phase of economic and social transformation. “It has become the second largest economy of the world, the largest trading nation, a leader in artificial intelligence and host a world class infrastructure across every nook and corner of a continent sized country. China’s experience of poverty alleviation, bringing 800 million people out of poverty in three decades was unparalleled in human history.”
He said, “We pay tribute to the Chinese leadership which has done an incredible job in changing the lives and destiny of its 1.4 billion people. We believe that President Xi Jinping’s leadership at a momentous moment in history has greatly helped China in achieving its national aspirations. Towering Chinese leaders like Mao Zedong and President Zhou Enlai played a crucial role in strengthening our ties.”
“Similarly successive generations of leaders and people of both Pakistan and China made invaluable contribution to strengthen these ties over the past seven decades. We have built our ties around the principles of mutual understanding, mutual trust and mutual support.”
The multifaceted strategic and political cooperation of the two countries was stronger than ever. The two sides were coordinating at the multilateral and regional fora and support each other on the basis of their core interests, he continued.
He said Pakistan adhered to the one China policy and China had stood by Pakistan in supporting our key strategic, economic and developmental priorities. “We are looking forward to receive President Xi Jinping in Pakistan this year.”
“We believe that this visit will further elevate our ties. Our two countries have a fine tradition of standing by each other in the hour of need. At the outbreak of COVID 19 in China, Pakistan immediately dispatched essential medical supplies to China to support in its fight against COVID 19. President Arif Alvi travelled to Beijing in March, 2020 to express solidarity with the people and government of China.”
“When pandemic was spreading in Pakistan, China helped us generously and we are thankful to China for gifting us 500,000 doses of Sinopharm vaccine which helped in saving lives of our frontline health workers.”
In recent years our social and cultural relations had become much stronger, he said adding currently over 28,000 Pakistani students were studying in China benefiting from the China’s advanced educational system.
“We have established seven sister provinces and thirteen sister cities relationships with China. Seven Pakistan study centers, 11 Urdu language departments in various Chinese universities and four Confucius Institutes were promoting cultural understanding between the two countries.
He said Pakistan supported President Xi’s visionary belt and road initiative that had become a pivot for connectivity and global economic growth.
As the flagship project of Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was set to become a high quality demonstration project. There was a complete consensus across the political spectrum in Pakistan on CPEC’s indispensability for our national development, he noted.
He said, “On the special occasion of the 70th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations of Pakistan and China, we have planned a series of activities spread over the year to commemorate the historic occasion in a befitting manner.”
“We hope that these activities will inspire our younger generations to understand the vitality and depth of our relationship and understand its historic significance and move it further with greater conviction, vigor and determination.”