ISLAMABAD – Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing has termed Pakistan China’s most important partner and said that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor(CPEC) project was pivotal in China’s foreign policy.
He made these remarks during a meeting with members of the Parliamentary Committee on CPEC held here on Monday under the chair of Senator Mushahid Hussain.
Briefing the media after the meeting, Hussain said that Pakistan and China agreements regarding the Western route of the CPEC , the Karachi Circular Railway and Main Line-I of the Pakistan Railway were finalised.
He said that Chinese Ambassador informed them that China will ‘donate’ 50 schools for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas.
Hussain said that it was informed that currently, 9,581 Chinese were working in Pakistan in different projects that excluded the labour force.
The Chinese Ambassador said that the CPEC was the main pillar of China’s foreign policy and they have five components for the execution of the projects in the future.
In 2018, they will take the corridor’s projects ahead and complete the ongoing projects, make the projects sustainable, engage the media to bring transparency in it, Mushahid Hussain said.
He said that some people were propagating against the CPEC and their roots were outside Pakistan.
While talking about Special Economic Zones, he said that China wants Pakistan to run them a joint venture with private investors having a leading role in it.
He said that the fifth component that came under discussion was that the CPEC will also be expanded to Afghanistan and Central Asia.
He said that a business expo will be held at Gwadar on January 29 and 30, where 80 Chinese companies were participating.
Private companies were also participating in the expo, he said.
Earlier introducing the new Ambassador as “an old friend of Pakistan”, Senator Mushahid Hussain said that “Ambassador Yao Jing had served in Islamabad, Kabul and New Delhi and “we are fortunate that now he is posted as Ambassador in Islamabad at a time of tremendous transformation”.
The Chinese Ambassador said that China and Pakistan would protect their “common interests together”, with CPEC gaining “more significant and greater attention in the region as it is also a project for regional cooperation and connectivity”.
He said that China will firmly stand by Pakistan and the CPEC will be strengthened and taken forward.
Ambassador Yao Jing said that among the priorities of China’s foreign policy in “making CPEC more sustainable, meeting the satisfaction level of both sides, making CPEC more understandable for the media with transparency and access to information, establish a framework to build Special Economic Zones (SEZs) through joint ventures with the private sector as well as investors from other countries and promote regional cooperation and broaden CPEC to include Afghanistan and Central Asia”.
Parliamentary Committee members said that they were 100 per cent supportive of the CPEC .
Meanwhile, Ministry of Planning, Development and Reform, Secretary Shoaib Siddiqui also briefed the Parliamentary Committee about the recent visit of a high-level delegation from Pakistan to China to take forward the decisions of the last JCC meeting held in November 2017.
The meeting was attended by Minister for States and Frontier Regions Lt-Gen (Retd) Abdul Qadir Baloch, MNAs Isphanyar M Bhandara, Sheikh Salahuddin, Alhaj Shahji Gul Afridi and Senator Sardar Fateh Muhammad Hassani.
Chinese envoy satisfied with
Ambassador of China to Pakistan Yao Jing and National Security Adviser Lt-Gen (retd) Nasser Khan Janjua had an interaction Monday and both exchanged views on matters pertaining to bilateral relationship and the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor project.
The adviser said Pakistan and China shared very special and close relationship and “we regard China as a most reliable friend and a partner”.
The Chinese envoy expressed his satisfaction over the growing mutual cooperation and said that Chinese government has every confidence in the leadership and the people of Pakistan and “is ever willing to move forward for mutual prosperity and bilateral cooperation”.
Both sides discussed different aspects of the CPEC . The envoy said that China believed that building of economic corridor is conducive to promoting connectivity and shared prosperity of the entire region.
The adviser assured that “we have a greater national consensus and every Pakistani is committed to the CPEC project. “The CPEC is key to regional prosperity and sustainable peace in the region,” he said.
The two sides expressed support for constructive efforts for peace and stability in Afghanistan. The adviser also apprised the ambassador about Pakistan’s efforts to forge cooperative relations with all its neighbours on the basis of mutual respect and peaceful coexistence.