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China is confident in working with Pakistan: Chinese Foreign Ministry

22 November, 2017

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ISLAMABAD: China has reiterated support for Pakistan in the execution of the China-Pakistan Econo­mic Corridor (CPEC) and expressed the hope that acceptance of multi-billion dollar communications, transport and infrastructure project by regional countries would grow.

“China is confident in working with Pakistan to ensure the sound development of the CPEC and uphold the economic and trade cooperation between the two countries,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said in Beijing. His comments were shared by the Chinese embassy in Islamabad with the local media on Tuesday.

The spokesman was responding to the claim by Pakistani officials that India had set up a special cell to undermine the CPEC.

“RAW has established a new cell with a special allocation of over $500 million in 2015 to scuttle CPEC projects. We cannot close our eyes to these blatant facts,” Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee Gen Zubair Hayat said at a seminar last week.

Security is believed to be the major challenge in the CPEC’s execution. Pakistani authorities say that convicted Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav is proof of Indian designs to sabotage the CPEC. The Chinese foreign ministry spokesman said that Beijing had “noted the relevant reports”.

Mr Lu recalled that the project would benefit not only Pakistan and China but also the region at large by promoting regional connectivity and common prosperity
“We hope that the CPEC will receive wider approval and support among the regional countries and the rest of the international community,” the spokesman said.

A senior Pakistani general had last year proposed to India to give up its opposition to the CPEC and join the project. The proposal was welcomed in Beijing, but was ignored by New Delhi.

Meanwhile, new Chinese Amba­ssador to Pakistan Yao Jing called on Army Chief Gen Qamar Bajwa.

The army chief also met China’s Assistant Foreign Minister and Special Envoy on Korean Peninsula Affairs Kong Xuanyou.

“During the meeting matters of mutual interest, including regional security, were discussed. Visiting dignitaries also acknowledged and appreciated Pakistan Army’s contributions for peace and stability in the region,” the ISPR said.

Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi said on Tuesday that Pakistan and China shared the vision of a peaceful neighbourhood and would continue to work together for the development and progress of the both nations.

Talking to Chinese Assistant Foreign Minister Kong Xuanyou who led a delegation here at the PM Office, the prime minister expressed resolve to further strengthen Pakistan-China strategic cooperation.

He expressed satisfaction at the close cooperation between Pakistan and China on all issues of bilateral importance, including high-level interactions, the CPEC, trade, security and situation in the region and Afghanistan.

Mr Abbasi noted that projects related to the CPEC, energy and infrastructure were progressing smoothly and attaining timely completion.

He emphasised the need to further intensify cooperation on other CPEC-related projects, including human development and livelihood, education and health so that CPEC’s benefits could trickle down to the common man.

The Chinese assistant foreign minister, who is visiting Pakistan for the eighth round of Pakistan-China Strategic Dialogue, conveyed Prime Minister Abbasi the best regards of Premier Li Keqiang.

He appreciated Pakistan’s support to China on its core issues and thanked the prime minister for his letter of congratulations to the Chinese leadership on the success of 19th CPC Congress.

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