Beijing: President Xi Jinping on Friday described the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) as a landmark project under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and said it is of great importance to promoting in-depth development of the all-weather strategic cooperative partnership between the two countries.
Xi, also General Secretary of the ruling Communist Party of China, made the remarks in a verbal message to Pakistani President Arif Alvi, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
Replying to a congratulatory letter sent by the Pakistani president to the opening of the Second Conference of the CPEC Political Parties Joint Consultation Mechanism, Xi said that it fully demonstrated that Alvi attaches great importance to and supports the China-Pakistan relationship and construction of the CPEC.
The USD 60 billion CPEC connecting China’s resource-rich Xinjiang province with Pakistan’s strategic Gwadar port in Balochistan is regarded as the flagship project of the multi-billion BRI, the pet scheme of President Xi aimed at furthering China’s influence globally with Chinese funded infrastructure projects.
India has objected to the CPEC as it is being laid through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).
Xi’s message to Alvi comes on the day Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and his Pakistan counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi concluded their two-day 2nd strategic dialogue at China’s island resort of Hainan on Friday.
In his message to Alvi, Xi said China and Pakistan are good brothers and partners who share special friendship.
The political parties from both sides often carry out friendly consultations and constantly build political consensus, which is conducive to steadily advancing the construction of the CPEC as well as high-quality Belt and Road cooperation, he said.
China stands ready to work with Pakistan to build a closer China-Pakistan community with a shared future, jointly promote regional solidarity and cooperation, and safeguard the good momentum of peace and development in the region, the Chinese president said.