General

Pak-China agrees on early implementation of China-Pakistan Free Trade Agreement

Pakistan and China have reaffirmed their firm resolve to further strengthening Pakistan-China All-Weather Strategic Cooperative Partnership aimed at building a Community of Shared Future in the New Era.
This resolve was expressed in a joint statement issued in Beijing on the conclusion of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s two-day official visit to China.
The two sides observed that the close ties, deep-rooted friendship and strategic partnership between Pakistan and China served the fundamental interests of the two countries and peoples, and contributed to peace, stability and development in the region. They also reaffirmed their support on issues concerning each other’s core interests.
Chinese leaders reiterated solidarity with Pakistan in safeguarding its territorial sovereignty, independence and security.
The Pakistan side reaffirmed its commitment to the One China Policy. Supporting One Country Two Systems, Pakistan reiterated that affairs of Hong Kong are China’s internal matter and all countries should uphold international law and basic norms of non-interference in internal affairs of other countries.
The Pakistan side briefed the Chinese side on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, including its concerns, position, and current urgent issues.
The Chinese side responded that it is paying close attention to the current situation in Occupied Kashmir and reiterated that the Kashmir issue is a dispute left from history, and should be properly and peacefully resolved based on the UN Charter, relevant UN Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreements. China opposes any unilateral actions that complicate the situation.
Pakistan side underscored that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor is a transformational project. Both sides maintained that the second phase of CPEC will promote industrial and socio-economic development in Pakistan.
Pakistan side also underlined that the Gwadar Port has been granted various facilities enabling it to become a trade and logistical hub for the region. The two sides expressed determination to speedily execute CPEC so that its growth potential can be fully realized.
The two sides maintained that the ninth session of the Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) to be held next month in Islamabad would further fast-track implementation of the ongoing projects and explore new avenues of cooperation, including ML-1.
They underlined that Chinese investment in Special Economic Zones and collaboration in Small and Medium Enterprise sector would further expand Pakistan’s industrial base and diversify its export base.
Both sides agreed to jointly study identified projects by the Pakistan side in power, petroleum, gas, agriculture, industrial and infrastructure sectors.
They underlined that educational links between the two countries are becoming stronger. Prime Minister Imran Khan thanked Chinese leadership for providing opportunities to Pakistani students to study in China.
He hoped that those students will play an important role in further deepening historic and deep-rooted ties between the two iron brothers.
The two sides agreed that early implementation of the Second Phase of the China-Pakistan Free Trade Agreement would contribute to increase in bilateral trade. Both sides decided to take full advantage of the China-Pakistan Joint Economic and Trade Commission to achieve balanced and sustainable development of bilateral economic and trade cooperation.
Reaffirming that there is no military solution to Afghanistan problem, the two sides agreed that peace and stability in Afghanistan is vital for regional security.
The Chinese side appreciated Pakistan’s efforts in promoting peace and reconciliation process in Afghanistan. Both sides maintained that an inclusive, and Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process would be key to bring peace and stability in the country.
During the visit, Prime Minister Imran Khan and his Chinese counterpart Li Keqiang witnessed the signing of various agreements and Memorandums of Understanding.