RESPECT, sincerity, empathy and friendliness are always discernible whenever the leaders as well as people of Pakistan and China meet each other. The same warmth was seen in the meeting between President Mamnoon Hussain and Chinese President Xi Jinping at the coastal Chinese city of Qingdao on the sidelines of SCO Summit. The words of Chinese President Xi Jingping that all-weather strategic cooperation is not only the shared asset of the two countries, but also offers a model for building a new type of international relations, unambiguously imply and strengthen the feeling that the bonds of friendship between the two countries are enduring and strong, no matter what changes occur at international or domestic levels.
While highlighting the significance of Pak-China relations, Xi said that his country is willing to intensify high level contacts and strategic communication with Pakistan. Indeed over the last few years one has seen greater exchanges taking place between the two countries at different levels and undoubtedly giving further impetus to them will help both the countries to explore and unearth more avenues of cooperation and learn from each other’s experiences in different fields. This is also the way forward to take the relationship to new heights. In fact, the mutli billion-dollar China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) has further brought the two countries to a closer partnership for shared economic prosperity in the region and beyond. And to make the most out of this mega project, closer interaction in fields such as agriculture, trade, economy, scientific research, industries and so on will be a win-win situation for both the countries to actually realise what the Chinese President XI is persistently articulating the vision of ‘shared prosperity’.
During the meeting with President Mamnoon, the Chinese President also vowed to enhance anti-terrorism cooperation with Pakistan and renewed his country’s support for sovereignty and territorial integrity of Pakistan. Indeed over the years, both Pakistan and China have always shared common viewpoints on matters of international and regional issues. At a time when some powers were and still are trying to make Pakistan scapegoat and browbeat it for their own failures, it is the Chinese side that came in full support of Pakistan and recognised, acknowledged its sacrifices and efforts in the war on terror. This pragmatic approach and relentless support has further deepened the love of Chinese people in the hearts of Pakistanis and this is the reason that they fully support greater Chinese role at the international forums. It will also be unfair not to laud President Mamnoon Hussain who has always spoken highly about partnership with China and also misses no opportunity either at home or in his interactions with world leaders about the bright and multidimensional prospects of the CPEC.
It is a matter of satisfaction that both the countries also fully realise the conspiracies and threats to this mega project and as a result have also enhanced their security cooperation especially in the field of maritime for safe passage of cargo vessels from Gwadar port. As all-around partners and friends sharing weal and woe, China and Pakistan have jointly undergone a tough and glorious journey. Looking into the future, we have no doubt in saying that the two countries will stand together regardless of any change in regional and international situations and work together to shape a bright future not only for their own people but also for people of the region. The goal can be achieved by also involving Russia, Afghanistan, the Central Asian Republics (CARs) and Iran into a partnership or alliance that collectively work towards regional integration and economic prosperity which will also go a long way in freeing the region from conflicts and violence.