Prime Minister Imran Khan and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on Thursday reaffirmed their resolve to further solidify Pakistan-China bilateral relations.
The commitment was reiterated during a telephonic conversation between the two leaders as part of the 70th anniversary of the establishment of Pakistan-China diplomatic ties.
During the call, the prime minister congratulated the Chinese premier on the special occasion, that would be celebrated by both the sides in a befitting manner.
According to reports, both the leaders stressed the need to continue with the momentum of high-level exchanges to further diversify and deepen strategic cooperation between the two countries.
PM Imran further emphasised that with the collective and tireless efforts over the years Pakistan and China had transformed their relationship into an “All-Weather Strategic Co-operative Partnership”.
"The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is a flagship project of the Belt and Road Initiative and has generated economic activity, employment and will further enhance bilateral and regional trade," the premier said.
The year 2021 is a special occasion as it marks the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Pakistan and China, he added.
PM Imran also highlighted Pakistan-China cooperation in fighting Covid-19 and deeply appreciated China’s continued support to Pakistan in the supply of the Covid-19 vaccine.
He thanked China for providing assistance to the National Institute of Health (NIH) for establishing a vaccine manufacturing facility in Pakistan that would further solidify the country's efforts to combat Covid-19.
Prime Minister Imran also congratulated Premier Keqiang and the Chinese leadership for the successful landing of the Chinese spacecraft on Mars, which showed the rising technological prowess of China.
‘China committed to Pakistan's development’
Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Nong Rong said that Pakistan and China were tied in deep-rooted relations and these relations will further fortify with the passage of time.
The Chinese ambassador’s remarks came while addressing the book launching ceremony titled "Higher than Karakoram: Seven Decades of Pakistan-China partnership" in Islamabad today.
“China is fully committed to the development of Pakistan. We should be fully prepared to defeat those who are not happy with Pak-China close friendship and success of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor project,” added Ambassador Rong.
He further said that people-to-people exchanges played an important role in developing the bilateral relations. People of both the countries need to know each other for a better understanding, he added.
Speaking on the occasion, Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood said Pak-China relationship is and will remain the cornerstone of Pakistan's foreign policy. He said China always supported the issue of Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir.
“The CPEC project will promote regional connectivity and contribute to the national development as well. The CPEC has entered into the second phase, with focus on industrialisation and agriculture sector to ensure socio-economic development,” he added.
Foreign Secretary Mahmood further expressed gratitude to China over the provision of anti Covid-19 vaccine that helped saving precious lives.
“High-level exchanges are the hallmark of our relations to further solidify the mutual cooperation between the two countries,” he added.
Expressing his views, Pakistan's Ambassador to China Moin-ul-Haque said Pakistan and China enjoy strong relations as both the countries always supported each other in the hour of trial and played an important role in ensuring regional peace and stability.