Pakistan, China to strengthen strategic partnership in all fields

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Talks on CPEC related security issues

Islamabad

Additional Secretary of the Ministry of Interior Rehman Malik here called on China’s Assistant Foreign Minister Kong Xuanyou and reviewed the security situation, with particular reference to China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). During the meeting, both sides exchanged views on China-Pakistan relations, the construction and security guarantee work of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a flagship project of China’s $900 billion Dollar global development plan called ‘Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), says a message received here from Beijing.
Rehman Malik was leading a delegation to visit China. The visit of the Interior Ministry’s senior official to China came at a time when a new government took over in Pakistan, led by Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi. To counter the speculations and negative impact on CPEC project after removal of PM Nawaz Sharif, both governments of China and Pakistan immediately released statements giving assurance of support to continue development work on CPEC, a vital link for China to peruse global development goals. From the Chinese side, Premier Li Keqiang expressed China’s commitment to continue to promote the development of bilateral cooperation by stating ‘Chinese side is ready to work with the Pakistan side to strengthen mutually beneficial China-Pakistan strategic partnership in all fields, and promote the development of CPEC for the betterment of two countries and well-being of peoples, and to contribute to peace and stability of the region’.
Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, while meeting Chinese Ambassador Sun Weidong, also guaranteed by saying that he will work to implement CPEC as it was being implemented, and he will personally supervise the speedy completion of all the projects under the CPEC.
Beyond CPEC, our economic cooperation will further enhance, the Prime Minister stated. Currently, a large number of Chinese nationals are living and working in Pakistan, mainly engaged in implementation of CPEC’s related projects.
Protection of Chinese citizens working in Pakistan is the ‘top priority’ of the government, Pakistan government assured to Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi when he visited Islamabad in June, 2017.To further beef up the security, Pakistan has established a 15,000-strong military force dedicated to protect Chinese nationals working on energy and infrastructure projects under CPEC in the country.—TNS