Pakistan-China friendship everlasting

China’s National Day is celebrated across Pakistan like a national event

Friendly relations have transformed into an all-weather strategic cooperative partnership characterised by mutual trust, respect, goodwill.


 ISLAMABAD  -  Pakistan-China friendship is nearly as long as Pakistan’s own age as an independent nation and it is no surprise that China’s National Day is celebrated across Pakistan like a national event.

The iron-brothers, as they call themselves, have cultivated a ro­bust and enduring relationship. This diplomatic partnership, ini­tiated in May 1951, has evolved into a close friendship and col­laboration that spans various do­mains. Yesterday, Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar and Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani con­veyed warm felicitations to their Chinese counterparts, emphasiz­ing the enduring friendship be­tween the two nations. Pakistan Ambassador to China, Moinul Haque, also extended greetings, highlighting China’s remarkable achievements and its role as a pillar of peace, stability, develop­ment, and progress in the world.

They all acknowledged that Pakistan and China’s close and friendly relations have trans­formed into an “All-Weather Strategic Cooperative Partner­ship” characterized by mutual trust, respect, and goodwill. They maintained that the economic dimension of this partnership has been particularly significant. Several events were held across Pakistan at the official and un­official levels in the last few days to mark China’s National Day. Both nations, upholding prin­ciples of sover­eignty, have forged a strong bond while asserting their roles on regional and global stages.

Pakistan, facing two significant wars in the 1960s and 1970s, re­ceived vital support from China, solidifying their bilateral ties. China’s consistent backing of Pakistan on the Kashmir issue and its investments in infrastruc­ture projects underscore the depth of their partnership. In the early 2000s, Beijing and Islam­abad expanded their cooperation by embarking on projects such as the development of Pakistan’s Gwadar Port and the signing of a free trade agreement in 2006. The launch of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) in 2015, under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), further strength­ened their economic links, lead­ing to a notable increase in bilateral trade. Despite specula­tions by rivals, the China-Pak­istan partner­ship remains resilient, with no evidence of rifts undermin­ing their enduring collaboration. This partnership is anchored in historical foundations and contemporary developments grounded in mutual trust and shared strategic interests.

China’s recent decision to ex­tend a $ 2 billion loan to help Pakistan cope with its ongoing economic crisis underscores China’s commitment to its all-weather partnership with Paki­stan. Chinese investments in in­frastructure and energy projects in Pakistan had a positive im­pact, addressing chronic energy shortages and enhancing con­nectivity within the country and with neighboring states. Several infrastructure projects, includ­ing motorways, railways, and ports, have been initiated, with some already completed and others under construction. 

CPEC has also contributed over 12,000 megawatts of elec­tricity to alleviate Pakistan’s energy crisis. While there has been criticism regarding the slow development of industrial and Special Economic Zones (SEZs) with Chinese assistance, progress is being made. Land has been allocated for SEZs in various regions, particularly in Punjab and Sindh, which are expected to drive initiatives in this area. Economic collabora­tion, however, remains a rela­tively underexplored aspect of the partnership, requiring time and joint efforts to flourish.

The most critical facet of bi­lateral cooperation is security, and there has been extensive collaboration between Pakistan and China in recent years. Both countries have aligned closely on military cooperation and key strategic issues in regional secu­rity and counterterrorism. They maintain a strategic partnership focused on ensuring a stable and secure regional environment.

This strong partnership is exemplified by the remarks of Pakistan’s former army chief, General Qamar Javed Bajwa (retd), who described China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and Pakistan Army as “brothers in arms” dedicated to safeguard­ing their collective interests dur­ing a ceremony marking the 95th anniversary of the PLA. China plays a crucial role in maintain­ing a balance of power in South Asia, with Pakistan being the largest recipient of Chinese arms, accounting for nearly 40 percent of Chinese arms exports. Military interactions between China and Pakistan have surpassed China-Russia engagements between 2017 and 2021, encompassing joint exercises, defense coopera­tion, and the exchange of mili­tary technologies and expertise.

China’s unwavering support for Pakistan on critical matters like Afghanistan and the Kash­mir dispute highlights their alignment in shared interests. China’s swift call for a UN Se­curity Council meeting in 2019, following border escalations and air skirmishes between Pakistan and India, demonstrat­ed its steadfast support for Pak­istan within the United Nations. As the two friendly nations celebrated China’s National Day, the leadership of both the countries have pledged to stand together as everlasting friends and jointly work for peace and prosperity of the region.

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