ISLAMABAD/ BEIJING - As Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul- Haq Kakar has arrived in Beijing, he expressed Pakistan’s commitment to jointly building the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), saying the project has transformed the socio-economic landscape of Pakistan.
“The CPEC has transformed the socio-economic landscape of Pakistan, upgrading modern infrastructure, enhancing regional connectivity, ensuring energy security, and creating jobs,” the prime minister, who arrived in Beijing yesterday, said this in his article published in Global Times China.
Kakar arrived in Chinese capital on a fiveday visit to China where he would participate in the 3rd Belt and Road Forum (BRF) for International Cooperation. .
At the airport, he was warmly received by Chinese Minister of Science & Technology Wang Zhigang, Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Jiang Zaidong and Ambassador of Pakistan to China Moin-ul- Haq, an official statement issued by the PM Office said.
The prime minister is undertaking the visit at the invitation of Chinese President Xi Jinping.
He is accompanied by a high-level delegation including members of the cabinet and senior government officials. He would attend the opening ceremony of the BRF and address the high-level forum titled ‘Connectivity in an Open Global Economy’ to be held on October 18. The caretaker prime minister will hold bilateral meetings with President Xi Jinping, Premier Li Qiang and Li Xi, member of the Standing Committee of Politburo of CPC Central Committee.
The leaders will discuss all facets of bilateral relations, with particular focus on strengthening trade and economic cooperation between the two countries. They will exchange views on major regional and global developments. The prime minister will also meet other leaders of the countries participating in the BRF.
He will also meet with leading Chinese entrepreneurs and preside over an interactive roundtable on CPEC to explore new avenues for strengthening trade and investment ties between Pakistan and China.
To further strengthen the regional connectivity, trade, investment and people- to-people contacts between the neighbouring regions of Pakistan and China, Prime Minister Kakar will pay a two-day visit to Urumqi, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China. In Urumqi, he will meet the local leadership and business persons, and deliver a speech at the Xinjiang University.
“The visit of the prime minister comes in the backdrop of ongoing celebrations marking the 10 years of CPEC, the flagship project of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI),” the news release said.
ARTICLE IN GLOBAL TIMES:
Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar- ul-Haq Kakar has expressed the country’s commitment to jointly building the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), saying the project has transformed the socio-economic landscape of Pakistan.
“The CPEC has transformed the socio-economic landscape of Pakistan, upgrading modern infrastructure, enhancing regional connectivity, ensuring energy security, and creating jobs,” the prime minister wrote in his article published in Global Times China. PM Kakar, who is set to participate in the Third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in China on October 17-18 which marks the completion of a decade of the BRI, said Pakistan endorses China’s vision of CPEC as a corridor of growth.
As the flagship project of the BRI, he said, CPEC marks a milestone in Pakistan-China relations by placing “economic cooperation and connectivity at the very centre of the bilateral agenda”, making the two countries more interconnected.
“We fully endorse China’s proposal of developing the CPEC as a corridor of growth, livelihood, innovation, greenness, and openness - representing our two countries’ preference for a human-centric approach, inclusivity, and green development,” he said.
The prime minister said Pakistan and China as close friends, strategic partners, and iron brothers, are moving forward toward a destiny of shared future.
“The tale of China-Pakistan relations is not an ordinary one. It is an account of brotherhood, friendship, and trust, the foundations of which were laid more than 70 years ago,” he said.
Kakar said the timeless Pakistan- China partnership and deep-rooted friendship serve the interests of both countries and remain the cornerstone of Pakistan’s foreign policy.
He said Pakistan and its people, with absolute confidence, value the relationship greatly, and proudly call China as best friend. It is heart-warming that in China, the term “Ba Tie” meaning Iron Brother is reserved only for Pakistan, he added.
He termed the historical evolution of the Pakistan-China relationship amid the evolving regional and global developments as an “exemplary model of inter- state relationship”.
“The unique relationship of more than seven decades, underpinned by the rationale of strong political support, mutual trust, and all-round practical cooperation, has matured into a strong strategic partnership,” he said.
The prime minister paid tribute to the vision and statesmanship of President Xi Jinping who propounded the vision of building a global community of shared future, a new idea for global governance and cooperation, and a fresh approach toward international exchanges, thus drawing up a new blueprint for a better interconnected world.
He quoted Zhou Enlai, China’s first premier, who once said that “the friendly interactions between the peoples of China and Pakistan date back to the dawn of history” and mentioned in this regard the historic links such as the Silk Road and Gandhara civilization.
The prime minister said Pakistan was a pioneering member of the Group of Friends of the Global Development Initiative (GDI) proposed by President Xi Jinping and played an active role in giving it a more concrete shape.
“As the first one to ink a Memorandum of Understanding on the GDI, Pakistan stands ready to benefit from this cooperation in areas of education, healthcare, climate change, and poverty reduction,” he said.
He said Pakistan’s foreign policy objectives were based on “peace within and peace without,” as outlined by the founding father Muhammad Ali Jinnah.
Kakar said in a world marred by multiple challenges like conflicts, economic recessions, food insecurity, social inequalities, and climate change, the salience of the Pakistan-China all-weather strategic cooperative partnership assumed great importance.
He expressed gratitude to China for its support for Pakistan’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, and economic security, and its principled support on the issue of Kashmir.
Pakistan, he said, was committed to the one-China principle and extended its support to China on its core issues related to Taiwan, Hong Kong, Xizang (Tibet), Xinjiang, and the South China Sea.
Earlier, Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-HaqKakar asked the chief ministers of the four provinces to cut the prices of essential commodities and services, consequent to the substantial reduction in fuel prices.
In a major move, the government has slashed the petrol prices by Rs 40.
The prime minister issued the directive at federal and provincial levels, calling for the activation of a strict price control mechanism.
“All efforts should be directed towards transferring the benefit of reduction in petroleum prices to the people of Pakistan,” he wrote on social media platform, X The prime minister emphasized the strict implementation of this directive.
The prime minister also said Pakistan is deeply concerned about the ongoing violence and loss of life in Gaza and stands in solidarity with the oppressed people of Palestine.
“Pakistan calls for an immediate ceasefire and lifting of the blockade in Gaza,” he wrote on social media platform X.
The prime minister said Pakistan was closely coordinating with the Organization of Islamic Countries (OIC) and its member states on the fast deteriorating situation in Gaza.
He said Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani would attend the emergency meeting of OIC’s Executive Committee on October 18 and call for urgent action to alleviate the suffering of the people of Gaza.
The extraordinary meeting of the Executive Committee of the OIC will take place at the General Secretariat headquarters in Jeddah Governorate, Saudi Arabia.
He said Israel’s deliberate, indiscriminate and disproportionate targeting of civilians in Gaza was against all norms of civility and in manifest violation of international law.
“The breakout of violence needs to be seen in the context of years of forced and illegal occupation of Palestinian territory and repressive policies against its people,” he said.
He urged the UN and international community must immediately act to open safe and unrestricted humanitarian corridors for transportation of urgently needed relief supplies to the besieged Gaza.