Minister of State for Information, Broadcasting, National History and Literary Heritage Marriyum Aurangzeb has said that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is a project for shared destination of regional development and prosperity, which is supported by people of both the countries.
“Relations between Pakistan and China are rooted in mutual respect and love and the friendship between the two countries has become an indelible and important part of Pakistan’s history,” she said while addressing the opening ceremony of the CPEC Cultural Caravan Festival at PNCA on Sunday.
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She said that the CPEC was also a corridor of cultural harmony between China and Pakistan and people-to-people contacts.
The minister said that for the successful implementation of the development project it was also imperative to know and understand each other’s culture.
She said that Pakistan had signed cultural accords with China, which would enhance cooperation between the two countries in the domain of films, theatre, press, publications and related fields besides promotion of cultures.
She said that during the democratic regimes, culture was duly promoted. The artists, she added, had a sterling role in projecting Pakistan’s identity as a moderate and peaceful country. The artists and democracy had deep links with each other, she said, adding that during the democratic era the creative abilities of the artists and journalists gained strength.
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Aurangzeb said that the CPEC Cultural Caravan would help in presenting Pakistan as a peaceful and emerging country before the comity of nations.
The minister congratulated the artists for their brilliant performance, the PNCA management for making it a success and those, who wrote research papers on cultures of both the countries. She said that those endeavours would further reinforce the bonds of friendship between the two countries. She said that the government-to-government contacts were always there but the cultural initiatives would lead to effective contacts between the people of the two countries.
She said that like their ancestors they were also determined to take that friendship to new heights. She said that the friendship and bonds between the two peoples were decades old and they had remained on the upward curve throughout.
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She said that the CPEC was a key ingredient of the OBOR vision. Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif associated himself with that vision and launched the CPEC for the progress and prosperity of the posterity in 2013. Those, who translated that vision into reality, deserved unqualified accolades, she added.
The minister acknowledged that the former and present ambassadors of China in Pakistan had also played a significant role in that regard. She expressed the hope that the CPEC would be successfully completed within its stipulated time and it would usher in an era of prosperity not only for China and Pakistan but also for the entire region.
She said that the journey of the CPEC Cultural Caravan from China to Gwadar had been properly documented and the CPEC would also help in cultural exchanges between the two countries.
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The minister said that the success of development plans was linked to the participation of the people. She said that Pakistan was grateful to Chinese government and President Xi Jin Ping, who personally came to Pakistan to inaugurate the CPEC.
The minister informed the audience that Pakistan would participate in the film festival in Beijing and Shanghai for the first time and Pakistani movies would be screened in Chinese cinemas.
She said that culture was screen tourism that helped in creating awareness and understanding of language, history and culture of the concerned countries. She observed that the Chinese cuisine was very popular in Pakistan.
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She said that the cultural caravan commenced from China in November last and travelled up to Gwadar through the CPEC route and also made a documentary on history, culture and national heritage of the two countries, which was exhibited today. She said that the governments of both the countries and those, who managed that event, deserved congratulations. She said that the paintings made by the artists presented glimpses of progressing and peaceful Pakistan.
The minister observed that the artist community had a pivotal role in ending the culture of intolerance from the society. She revealed that Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi would announce cultural and film policy on Monday (today), which would strengthen the film and broadcasting industry. She said that the government had an unswerving commitment to revive and promote the film industry.
She said that apart from cultural agreements an accord was also signed between Chinese Scholarship Council and Higher Education Commission of Pakistan for exchange of scholarships.
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The Chinese and Pakistani artists also enthralled the audience during the inaugural ceremony of the Cultural Caravan. The minister also visited the stalls set up in regards to the Cultural Caravan.