Pakistan-China, true friends

172

AS Pakistan and China celebrated 69th anniversary of establishment of their diplomatic relations, Beijing has reiterated its position to continue working closely with Islamabad for taking the relationship to new heights and promoting the cause of regional security, peace and prosperity. At his regular briefing, Chinese Foreign Ministry’s spokesperson Zhao Lijian said that the iron clad friendship between the two countries had stood test of changing international landscape and remained firm as a rock.
The anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations, this year, was observed in the midst of Covid-19 and, therefore, there were no traditional activities and fanfare but there was no lack of warmness in the sentiments of the leadership and people of the two countries, who expressed their firm resolve to strengthen all dimensions of the ties for mutual benefit. While President Xi Jinpin proudly declared that the relationship is a high priority for his country in its neighbourhood diplomacy, Premier Li Keqiang assured that China was ready to deepen mutually beneficial cooperation with Pakistan. Similar sentiments were echoed by President Arif Alvi and Prime Minister Imran Khan who vowed to stand with brotherly people of China under all circumstances. A strongly worded message of Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing gave a vivid account of how strongly the bilateral relationship is and that the two sides are determined to diversify their cooperation further. The expression of ‘all weather friendship’ received more credence during the crisis thrown to the world by Coronavirus. China and Pakistan are standing firmly together and supporting each other in fighting this war. While Pakistan expressed its complete solidarity with China when it was single-handedly fighting the menace, Beijing extended liberal support and cooperation to Pakistan in overcoming the challenge. Chinese provided valuable support and as a result there was zero infection in CPEC related projects, no layoff of the local staff and Chinese engineers were not withdrawn. At a time when other sectors of the economy and work on thousands of development projects was on standstill, there was no disruption on CPEC projects, all energy projects guaranteed electricity supply and Gwadar Port and infrastructure projects ensured the normal supply of living material for people of Pakistan. This is important and significant as work on other foreign-assisted projects was affected due to temporary pulling of staff by respective government. It is hoped that through mutual cooperation the two countries would be able to overcome the problems being faced due to Covid-19.