ISLAMABAD — China is ready to strengthen all-round strategic and economic cooperation with Pakistan, said the visiting Vice-Premier Wang Yang in Islamabad on Aug 14.
Wang made the remarks at the commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the independence of Pakistan.
“We need to keep the tradition of close high-level exchanges, extend firm mutual support on issues concerning each other’s major interests and strengthen cooperation in international and regional affairs,” said the vice-premier.
Wang noted that China firmly supports Pakistani efforts to uphold independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, as well as to fight against terrorism in light of its own national conditions.
On the economic front, Wang said “China sees Pakistan as an important partner in the Belt and Road Initiative” and the two countries will take forward the building of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor by launching more early harvest projects to enhance Pakistan’s capacity for independent development and deliver tangible benefits to Pakistanis and people along the route.
Proposed by China in 2013, the Belt and Road Initiative refers to the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, aiming at building a trade and infrastructure network connecting Asia with Europe and Africa along the ancient trade routes of Silk Road.
China is also ready to strengthen all-round people-to-people exchanges with Pakistan by expanding cooperations in education, science and technology, culture, health and sports and encourage exchanges between youth, think-tanks, media, universities, non-governmental organizations and at the local level so as to promote China-Pakistan friendship, said the vice-premier.
Wang arrived in Pakistan on Aug 13 to attend the activities marking the 70th anniversary of Pakistan’s independence at the invitation of the Pakistani government.