Welcome, President Xi Jinping
Courtesy: SYED ALI NAWAZ GILANI
The Chinese President His Excellency Mr Xi Jinping is arriving today on a state visit to Pakistan after taking over the office of President of the People’s Republic of China on March 14, 2013. His visit was earlier postponed due to some preoccupied engagements on both sides. This visit is taking place in the backdrop of a very important geopolitical and regional situation apart from further boosting the exemplary Pak-China relations. This visit is also very important from the Pakistan’s political and economic point of view as we are currently engaged in Pak-China Economic Corridor project which if implemented in letter and spirit will enhance our economic activities manifold and the country will ultimately prospers.
The visiting Chinese President who is also the head of ruling Communist Party is expected to lead China for the next decade. Since assuming leadership, he has initiated an unprecedented and far reaching campaign against corruption, called for further market economic reforms, governance according to the law, strengthening legal institutions, and an emphasis on individual and national aspirations under the neologism “Chinese Dream”. President Xi Jinping introduced this new term to lay out his vision of a stronger nation based on the Chinese Path, the Chinese Spirit and Chinese Strength. This led some analysts to the view that he could pursue a more assertive foreign policy during his decade in power. His Excellency actually wants that the world’s second largest economy should take its rightful place in the world whereas the great nation works hard for the Chinese renaissance.
The 61-year-old Chinese President, His Excellency Xi Jinping belongs to a very committed family. He is the son of veteran Chinese revolutionary figure, Mr Xi Zhongxun who was one of the founding fathers of Chinese Communist Party. Mr Xi Jinping was known as “intellectual youth” early on while he was working in remote village of Liangjahe for around six years and was considered as sincere honest. He served as a local party secretary in Hebei Province before going to Fujian and Zhejiang provinces at senior positions where he showed his extraordinary capabilities. Less than a decade back in 2007, he was named as party chief in Shanghai, a very important position for central leadership.
China and Pakistan share a border of just 523 kilometres but they are the good neighbours. Their relationship was formed ahead of normal diplomatic relations which were established in 1951. Most importantly the people to people interaction is quite good. This visit was very much awaited by Pakistanis for last few months. China-Pakistan relationship has been defined as “Iron Brothers” whose “all-weather friendship” is “higher than the Himalayas and deeper than the oceans” and “sweeter than honey”. These words need to be translated in realties by taking full advantage of Chinese expertise in all fields of life. We in Pakistan must prepare ourselves to enjoy the fruits of economic development and socio-economic prosperity.
Decades-old China-Pakistan relations have witnessed strategic cooperation and partnership in recent years, apart from political and cultural interactions. Both countries are serious in helping each other on economic issues as well. Recently, long term plans like China-Pakistan Economic Corridor have been finalised and various MoUs signed in this regard to materialise the Chinese investment in Pakistan. The economic corridor is mainly about cooperation in three areas: energy, transport and industrial parks which will be a new platform for the growth of China-Pakistan strategic cooperation in the next five to ten years. Current year also has a special significance for China-Pakistan relations as the year 2015 has been declared as “Friendly Exchange Year”.
This visit is an excellent opportunity for the government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to prepare a proper plan to get help from China. The province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was declared as a friendly region with Xinjiang region of China in 2008 whereas Peshawar and Urumqi, and Abbottabad and Kashgar were declared as sister cities in 1985 and 2007 respectively. All these gestures can be used in a proper and favourable manner. Various NGOs under the banner of Pak-China friendship can play vital roles in promoting this friendship.