Beijing backs Islamabad carving own economic path: Chinese envoy

Beijing has reiterated its all-out support to Islamabad for carving out its own economic path which suits its national conditions, according to Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing.

“China firmly supported Pakistan in safeguarding its sovereignty and national dignity, choosing its own development path suited to its national conditions,” he said while speaking at the second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation (BRF) held on April 28 in Beijing.

At the invitation of Chinese President Xi Jinping, 40 national leaders and heads of international organisations including Prime Minister Imran Khan took part in the forum with more than 6,000 representatives from 150 countries and 92 international organisations in attendance.

Ambassador Yao Jing said that the conference highlighted the progress and significance of  the Belt and Road cooperation with a myriad of opportunities being created for common prosperity. “Since the initiative was proposed stakeholders have made concerted efforts to facilitate people-to-people exchange.”

He added: “So far, no country has fallen into a debt crisis because of the BRI [Belt and Road Initiative]. On the contrary, many countries have stepped out of the ‘trap of poverty’ by participating in the BRI.”

The envoy went on to say that the BRI aims to build a global partnership on connectivity.

He said meetings between President Xi and PM Imran have further pointed out the direction of our all-weather strategic cooperation with clear-cut measures.

The two sides also agreed to maintain the momentum of high-level exchanges, deepen the exchanges and cooperation in politics, security, trade and investment, people-to-people contact and other fields, and firmly support each other on core interest issues.

Regarding the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the two sides reviewed the important consensus reached during Premier Imran’s visit to China last year.

The two leaders also mapped out ways to  develop CPEC, underlining the importance of bringing policy synergy between the BRI and the development strategy of Pakistan, with more focus on industrial cooperation and social uplift and livelihood projects.

Regarding regional and international issues, the two sides exchanged views on situations in Afghanistan and South Asia.

China appreciated Pakistan’s efforts in combating terrorism and maintaining regional peace.

The two governments were satisfied with their close cooperation in international and multilateral forums and agreed to deepen communication and coordination at all levels.