REMARKS – Roundtable of China Focused Study Centres and Institute

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Roundtable of China Focused Study Centres and Institute

March 7, 2019

Remarks by Director General

Foreign Secretary Ambassador Tehmina Janjua

Excellency, Yao Jing, Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China

Chairman Board of Governors Ambassador Khalid Mahmood,

Director China Pakistan Study Center, Dr. Talat Shabbir,

Distinguished representatives of China focused centres in Pakistan,

Ambassadors and worthy guests,

Good Morning and a warm welcome to the Institute.

May I express our special pleasure in welcoming the honorable Foreign Secretary to the Institute. I thank her for agreeing to inaugurate this Roundtable.

Ambassador Tehmina and the Foreign Office under her leadership has been working hard to protect and promote our foreign policy goals. The entire nation has commended the performance of the Foreign Office in dealing with the recent crisis created by Modi’s India.

Ambassador Tehmina’s presence in this Roundtable also signifies the importance that Pakistan attaches to promoting our relations with China in all walks of our national life.

May I also welcome the Ambassador Yao Jing of the Peoples Republic of China. Ambassador Yao and his team have also been working hard to promote China-Pakistan relations. On behalf of the Institute, let me further thank the Ambassador for the consistent support that Chinese embassy has extended to the China Center of this Institute.

Today’s Roundtable is one of many programs that the China Center of the Institute has organized lately. The revitalization of the Center has become possible thanks to the leadership provided by the Center’s director Dr Talat Shabbir. He and his team have been working selflessly and are engaged in a series of activities to promote our relations with China.

Only yesterday, a very successful National Conference was organized which the honorable Foreign Minister inaugurated. And in all this Chinese embassy has been our valuable partner, for which I wish to thank Ambassador Yao and his team.

Ms Foreign Secretary, Mr Ambassador,

Today’s session is unique. It is for the first time that most, if not all, China Study Centres and Institutes focusing on salience of Pakistan’s relations with China have gathered under one roof.

The objective is to create harmony in the work of all these centers. In the next three hours, we would get to know each other and share ideas on how best to contribute to strengthening understanding and tangible cooperation between China and Pakistan.

          I would like to thank the heads of China focused study centres and institutes who have travelled from various parts of the country to attend today’s event. After the inaugural session, we would look forward to hearing from them, individually, the highlights of the important work they all engaged in to promote Pak-China relationship.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

          Pakistan regards China as a close and dependable friend. And from what I have seen through my several visits to China, the feelings in China about Pakistan are mutual. Both countries have built their ties on mutual respect and mutuality of benefit.

In the recent past, economic cooperation between the two countries has deepened in strength and substance. CPEC represents the collective will of the two countries to work together in multiple domains for the good of our people.

With the advent of the present government, several new chapters of cooperation are being added – from agriculture to socio-economic development to industrial cooperation and widening the export base of Pakistan. The people to people exchanges and linkages are also being enhanced. Yesterday, the Foreign Minister called this phase CPEC plus.

          In cementing ties between our two countries, the researchers and scholars too have an important role. The China centers across the country are serving as useful forums for thinkers and scholars to generate ideas to deepen bilateral cooperation between China and Pakistan.

We expect the outcome of this Roundtable to be concrete suggestions and recommendations for policy makers and stakeholders. We would compile the actionable ideas and suggestions, publish them, and share with you all.

May I now invite the honorable Ambassador of China, Ambassador Yao to kindly take the floor and share his thoughts. Thank You