Islamabad: Pakistan and China have agreed on the need for maintaining strategic balance in South Asia as top officials from both sides discussed bilateral and regional issues during Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s visit here . The issue of regional situation figured in the delegation-level talks between Sartaj Aziz, the Advisor to the Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs, and the Chinese Foreign Minister, who led a seven-member delegation.
“In the delegation-level talks between the Advisor and the Chinese Foreign Minister, the two sides reviewed all aspects of the bilateral relationship,” Pakistan’s Foreign Office said in a statement issued at the conclusion of Wang’s two-day trip yesterday.
“The two sides also took stock of regional developments and agreed on the need for maintaining strategic balance in South Asia,” it said. Besides discussing bilateral and regional matters, the two sides also held talks on the United Nations Security Council. “Both sides agreed on the need to make United Nations Security Council more representative and effective, and that its reform should be achieved by consensus,” it said.
They agreed that work on the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and its related projects should be expedited to ensure that Early Harvest Projects could be operationalised at the earliest. Aziz reiterated Pakistan’s commitment to fostering a peaceful neighbourhood in order to achieve its economic and development objectives. The two leaders welcomed the continuing cooperation between Pakistan and China for the promotion of peace and prosperity in Afghanistan.
This was Wang’s first official visit to Pakistan as the Foreign Minister and its main purpose was to prepare for the upcoming visit of the President Xi Jinping at an early date this year. During the visit, the Chinese Foreign Minister called on President Mamnoon Hussain and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
He also held meetings with Aziz and General Raheel Sharif, the Chief of the Army Staff. At a special investiture ceremony at the ‘Aiwan-e-Sadr’, President Hussain conferred the ‘Hilal-e-Pakistan’ civilian award on Wang in recognition of his invaluable contribution to the promotion of relations between Pakistan and China.
Wang also attended the launch of ‘2015 Pakistan-China Year of Friendly Exchanges’, co-hosted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Chinese Embassy in Islamabad. The inaugural ceremony was attended by several Federal Ministers, Chief Minister of Punjab and other dignitaries and Sardar Ayaz Sadiq, Speaker National Assembly, was the chief guest on the occasion.
During the Year of Friendly Exchanges, Pakistan and China have planned a series of activities in the parliamentary, cultural, education, media, business, and other spheres to further strengthen their strategic partnership and ‘all-weather friendship’.