PM Imran underlines CPEC’s significance for economic growth

ISLAMABAD: Noting that the ongoing second phase of the China-Pak­is­tan Economic Corridor (CPEC) would reinforce Pakistan’s efforts towards economic development with an enhanced cooperation in diverse areas, Prime Minister Imran Khan invi­ted Chinese investors to benefit from the lucrative investment opportunities in Pakistan.

The PM made these rem­arks during a meeting with Chinese State Coun­cilor and For­eign Minister Wang Yi on the sidelines of the OIC moot here on Tuesday.

PM Khan and Mr Yi discussed the current trajectory of China-Pakistan bilateral ties, and the evolving regional and international scenario. The two sides also discussed the situation in Ukraine and reiterated the need for a solution through sustained dialogue and diplomacy.

Mr Khan briefed the Chinese leader on India’s egregious human rights violations in India-held Kash­m­­ir and its “irresponsible” behaviour that was an impe­d­­­iment to regional peace and security.

He also apprised Mr Yi of the so-called accidental firing of a missile from India into Pakistan.

He also emphasised that Pakistan and China must continue deeper engagement to promote peace and stability in Afghanistan, and avert a humanitarian crisis there.

In his meeting with Palestinian Foreign Minister Dr Riyad al-Maliki, the prime minister maintained that the Palestinian tragedy was at the heart of the turmoil in the Middle East. He reiterated Islam­abad’s unequivocal support for the rights of the Palestinian people and their just struggle.

Later, in a meeting with Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein, Mr Khan reiterated Pakistan’s support for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Iraq.

FM meets envoys

Pakistan announced un­­conditional support for Saudi Arabia’s candidature to host the World Expo 2030 in Riyadh. The assurance came when Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi met his Saudi counterpart Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud on the sidelines of the OIC foreign ministers gathering here.

Prince Faisal thanked Pakistan for supporting the kingdom’s bid at the 169th General Assembly of Bureau International des Expo­sit­i­ons, scheduled for December 2023.

Prince Faisal underscored the importance that Saudi Arabia attached to its fraternal and strategic relationship with Pakistan. He conveyed Riyadh’s appreciation for the role Islamabad played in the OIC.

Meanwhile, FM Qureshi also met his counterparts from Gambia Dr Mamadou Tangara, Turkmenistan’s Ra­­­­­shid Meredov and Kaza­khstan’s Mukhtar Tileuberdi.

Army chief meets delegates

Separately, the Saudi foreign minister also called on Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa and appreciated Pakistan’s efforts for hosting the OIC meeting. The APP agency quoted an ISPR news release as stating that the two leaders discussed matters of mutual interest, regional security, the current situation in Afghanistan and bilateral defence ties.

Gen Bajwa said Pakistan valued its historic and brotherly relations with Saudi Arabia. He called the OIC session historic for bringing the international community together for a shared vision and joint strategy to find solutions to the emerging challenges vital for peace and stability.

Prince Faisal appreciated Pakistan’s role in the Afghan crisis, special efforts for border management, its role in regional stability, and pledged to play his part for further improvement in diplomatic cooperation with Pakistan.

Meanwhile, the army chief also met Azerbaijan’s Defence Minister Col Gen Zakir Hasanov and Republic of Kyrgyzstan’s Foreign Minister Ruslan Kazakbaev separately at General Headquarters. During the meetings, both sides reiterated their desire to further enhance bilateral relations, including efforts for peace and security in the region.

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