LAHORE: The video conference celebrating the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Pakistan with the theme of “Looking Back and Going Forward” co-hosted by Xuzhou Municipal Foreign Affairs Office, Jiangsu Normal University and Punjab University. Prof. Sun Hongqi, Director of Pakistan Studies Center, Jiangsu Normal University chaired the session. Moin ul Haque, Ambassador of Pakistan to China, underlined that in today’s world, when international ties have become more complex, the role of academic and research work has assumed a greater significance. He said that these academia think tanks, including universities, could keep a faithful record for bilateral ties, identify new areas of cooperation and explore definitely the complex metrics between politics, economics and culture and also bring in two countries together to more and more people to people exchanges. “China is Pakistan’s largest trading partner and largest source of foreign investment, he added. Chinese investment in Pakistan can be used for manufacturing to sell in Pakistan, export to China and EU at zero import duty,” said Hussain Haider, Consul General of Pakistan in Shanghai.
PU Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Niaz Ahamd Akhtar said that the historical background spanning over seven decades of the solid foundations of the mutual, lasting and ever flourishing friendship. He said that the relationships have been established on the basis of mutual trust, cooperation and harmony. He further added that there are vast opportunities of cooperation in higher education sector. “The Chinese Universities can admit Pakistani students in large number. Students who graduate from Chinese universities in Medical and Engineering subjects face difficulties in recognition of the degrees.” he further explained that, “if those universities are registered with accreditation bodies like Pakistan Engineering Council and Pakistan Medical Commission then the issue can be solved.” He said that every Pakistani believed that China was the most trustworthy friend of Pakistan.
Peng Zhengwu, Deputy Consul General of China in Lahore pointed out that Jiangsu has injected new vitality into the in-depth development of China-Pakistan relations. The Chinese Consulate General in Lahore is willing to constantly play an active role as a bridge to support Jiangsu and Punjab in deepening this relation. Dr.Amjad Magsi from Punjab University appreciated the generous help from China during the pandemic. “In April 2020, Jiangsu Provincial Government sent Pandemic prevention materials to Punjab a sign of Brotherhood“ as the Punjab and Jiangsu are sister provinces,” he added.
Dr Magsi said that through increased technology sharing and joint ventures, both can benefit from the true spirit of mutual friendship. He said there was a need to further broaden the basis of friendship to enhance the people to people relationship by focusing more on cultural and educational relationships. Explaining that China has offered quite good number of scholarships to Pakistani students and number of Pakistani students studying in China has reached 30 thousands, Dr. Magsi added that “as for Pakistanis, learning of Chinese is important similarly learning of Urdu and regional languages will go long way in cementing the cultural relationships but also will be of greater help in economic side.” Muhammad Mehdi, a foreign affairs expert, said that experience has taught Pakistan that our friendship with China is more of an all-weather friendship than a strategic partnership. He said that the relationship from the partnership of other countries both Pakistan and China have stood shoulder to shoulder in all international affairs. He said that Pakistan was a supporter of One China regardless of any opposition. He said that in the case of the South Asian Sea, all-weather friendship is everywhere. In the same way, he said, both have proved to be iron brothers in the social sphere. He said that in order to defeat the propaganda it is necessary to make all these issues more open to the public so that no propaganda can affect the friendship. In his concluding remarks, Prof. Sun Hongqi expressed his sincere thanks to the Chinese and Pakistani experts and scholars attending the meeting, stressed that joint efforts are needed to make the tree of China-Pakistan friendship evergreen, and said everyone has the responsibility and obligation to build the China-Pak Economic Corridor well and carry forward the spirit of friendly cooperation between China and Pakistan. Wu Weidong, Deputy Mayor of Xuzhou Municipal People’s Government, Huang Xiqiang, Superintendant of Foreign Affairs Office of Jiangsu Provincial People’s Government, Professor Cen Hong, Deputy Chair of the University Council, Jiangsu Normal University also spoke on the occasion. A video documentary of Punjab University was also played during the Conference.