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January 13, 2011

Further steps urged to strengthen Pakistan-China ties


January 13, 2011

A two-day seminar on ‘Pakistan-China Relations’ organised by the Institute of Strategic Studies (ISS) concluded here on Wednesday with a consensus among the speakers that bilateral ties had stood the test of time but both nations needed to take further steps that could sustain this exemplary friendship.
The concluding remarks were delivered by ISS Director General and former ambassador Tanvir Ahmad Khan, who said China had been a major factor in South Asia politics since the Great Chinese Revolution and particularly since 1963 when Pakistan and China reached their historic accord on boundary delimitation.
Earlier, in the day, the third and the last session of the conference was held with Dr. Saeed Shafqat, Centre for Public Policy and Governance, FC College University, in the chair. The first speaker in this session was former ambassador Khalid Mahmood who spoke on ‘Pakistan-China Strategic Cooperation’.
He said the Sino-Pakistan relationship was marked by deep mutual trust, confidence and understanding rooted in their strict adherence to the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence and the UN Charter.
He, however, noted that the growing ties between the US and India had introduced a destabilising element into the regional strategic milieu which was having its impact upon Pakistan-China relations as well.
He also identified several areas where the two neighbours needed to give attention to if they were to further solidify their mutual relations.
The next to speak was ISS’s Fazl-ur-Rehman who gave ‘An Assessment of Pakistan-China Bilateral Trade and Investments’, which highlighted the fact that Pakistan-China economic relations had been moving upwards during the recent years.
However, he noted that there have been some concerns among the Pakistani business community vis-a-vis trade relations with China. He also identified several factors, which were impeding the growth of Pakistan-China economic ties.
From each

side a presentation was made which discussed ‘Sixty Years of Pakistan-China Cultural Relations.’ From Pakistani side, Director General Academy of Letters, Dr. Abdal Bela was the speaker whereas Zhang Haiwei from Confucius Institute, NUML, spoke from the Chinese side. Both the speakers highlighted the cultural ties that exist between the two states and asked them to further strengthen these ties.
The conference that was organised in order to launch the intellectual side of the decision of the two countries to celebrate 2011 as the year of Pakistan-China friendship, was inaugurated by State Minister for Foreign Affairs Nawabzada Malik Ammad Khan.

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