LAHORE: “China has made great progress which is a result of unprecedented effort by its people. The country is now a role model for the entire world,” Chief Minister Shhabaz Sharif said on Thursday.
He was speaking to a delegation of journalists from China that called on him.
The chief minister congratulated the Chinese government, its leaders and people on the 95th anniversary of the Communist Party of China. He said that Pakistan and China shared an everlasting friendship. He said ties between the Communist Party of China and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz were getting stronger.
“Chinese leaders and people have achieved a commendable place in the world through hard work.” The chief minister said Chinese President Xi Jinping had set a new direction by giving a vision of one ballot, one road. “This is the vision of development, prosperity, peace, tolerance and brotherhood,” he said.
Referring to China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, Sharif said it was a great gift from the Chinese leaders and people. He said that CPEC projects would change the course of history not only for Pakistan but also for the entire region. He said that when Pakistan was going through the testing times, China had given Islamabad a package of $46 billion. He said work was continuing on energy projects launched under the CPEC.
Sharif said the energy projects would be completed earlier than they would have in China. He said China had funded the Orange Line Metro Train Project in Lahore. He said China had released the second instalment of funds for the project. He thanked Chinese leaders and Exim Bank of China for providing funds for the project.
The chief minister said the provincial government had sent the first batch of students to China for learning the Chinese language. He said another batch would be sent to China soon.
Chinese Consul General Yu Boren praised the chief minister for playing a pivotal role in strengthening the Pakistan-China friendship. He said work on CPEC projects was under way across the Punjab.
He said China and Pakistan had common goals.
The Chinese journalists congratulated the chief minister on Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s recovery from a heart surgery.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 1st, 2016.