PM, Chinese leadership resolve to further strengthen bilateral ties: FM

PM, Chinese leadership resolve to further strengthen bilateral ties: FM

ISLAMABAD, Feb 6 (APP): Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi Sunday said that Prime Minister Imran Khan held very comprehensive meetings with the Chinese leadership and reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral ties.

During these high-level meetings, leadership of the two countries discussed future prospects of the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CEPC), economic integration, and the next phase of CPEC.

The foreign minister was talking to media after his return from China. Foreign minister Qureshi was a part of the high-level delegation led by Prime Minister Imran Khan that visited China to attend the Beijing Winter Olympic games at the special invitation of the Chinese leadership.

The foreign minister said “Without any hesitation, I want to say that these meetings were held extensively and with much clarity.”

Over Afghanistan, both the countries shared unanimous opinion. Pakistan’s contributions towards Afghan humanitarian assistance were acknowledged by China, he said, adding, the Chinese leadership viewed the holding of the extraordinary meeting of OIC on Afghanistan as a successful one.

The foreign minister informed that during his meeting with Chinese counterpart Wang Yi, they agreed to meet again in Beijing in March. The immediate neighbours of Afghanistan would be invited to a meeting including Iran, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan etc.

He said Pakistan, China and Afghanistan were members of a trilateral forum which would be further strengthened for coordination over Afghanistan.

Referring to India, the foreign minister said that they were concerned over treatment of minorities, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians and Dalits as their human rights were being trampled.

China and Pakistan shared same opinion and there was no ambiguity over the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) issue, he maintained.

During the delegation-level talks, and meeting with premier Li, they discussed ways and means to move on the economic front, enhance market access, bridge the trade imbalance and increase Chinese investment in different areas.

Qureshi said that had identified areas where the Chinese companies could get benefits through investment. “These are the win-win projects”, and they had conveyed such economic prospects to the Chinese companies through a well-prepared booklet, he added.

The prime minister, he said, held meetings with about twenty prominent state and private companies in which their authorities had identified interests over investment in key areas of Pakistan.

The prime minister also shared Pakistan’s perspective over a host of issues during his interaction with the renowned think tanks in China, he added.

The foreign minister said during the splendid opening ceremony of Beijing Winter Olympics, the Pakistani athletes were warmly received by the Chinese people which reflected that this friendship was people-centric, as people in both countries regarded each other as brothers and friends.

The foreign minister further said that to advance the shared objectives of economic progress and prosperity and bilateral cooperation, they had also devised a follow-up mechanism.

“We have received greetings and warmth more than our expectations. China has a clear direction in which Pakistan has a prominent position,” he added.

Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain said that the Chinese leadership had appreciated government’s economic reforms and fiscal discipline.

Terming the Prime Minister’s visit to China as ‘highly successful’, he expressed the confidence that it would bring further stability in the country’s economy.

The ties between Pakistan and China were not only changing the regional situation but also changing the economic situation, he added.