Friendship with China transforming into robust economic partnership: Imran

Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan

Pakistan attaches great importance to projects taken under the $60 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, Prime Minister Imran Khan said Thursday, as he expressed satisfaction at Islamabad's "robust" economic partnership with Beijing.

The CPEC, which connects Gwadar Port in Balochistan with China's Xinjiang province, is the flagship project of Chinese President Xi Jinping's ambitious Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

India has been boycotting the BRI to protest over the CPEC being laid through the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

Vice Chair of the 12th NPC Foreign Affairs Committee and head of the Advisory Committee of the BRI Initiative International Think Tank of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences Zhao Baige called on Prime Minister Khan on Thursday.

"It was a matter of great satisfaction to note that all-weather and time-tested Pak-China friendship is transforming into a robust economic partnership," Khan said while welcoming Zhao and her delegation.

Pakistan attaches great importance to the CPEC projects and all efforts were being made to further streamline and improve coordination at all levels, especially when the project has entered into its second phase with inclusion of critical areas such as agriculture, socio-economic development, he said in a statement.

Khan wanted to learn from Chinese experience and expertise in different sectors.

He said a special cell was being established at the Prime Minister's Office to ensure seamless coordination between businesses of public and private sectors.

Zhao, in her remarks, said China will continue extending all possible cooperation to Pakistan in areas such as agriculture, health, housing and socio-economic development.

The visit of Zhao and her delegation came soon after the visit by General Han Weiguo, Commander People's Liberation Army (PLA) Ground Forces, who left on Wednesday after paying an official visit.

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