ISLAMABAD, Apr 21 (INP) Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif Tuesday thanked President Xi Jinping for his inspiring address at the Parliament expressing solidarity with the people of Pakistan, and his valuable insights on how the two nations should move forward, hand in hand, to seize new opportunities and overcome challenges.
In his vote of thank for the Chinese President after the address of the distinguished guest, the Prime Minister said the two countries will do so in pursuit of their shared goals of peace, stability and prosperity in our region and beyond.
Nawaz Sharif said today is a great day for this Parliament and for the people of Pakistan as they welcomed a dear friend and the leader of a great nation that is our next door neighbour.
He said President Xi Jinping is a special guest and quoted Confucius
“How delightful it is to have friends visiting us from afar!” He said Pakistanis are delighted to have President Xi among themselves and emphasised that he is not a friend from afar; but one, who is so close to our heart.
He said Mr. Xi Jinping, as in China, is popular in Pakistan as we know you have a strong association with Pakistan. He said “ mountains and rivers join our territories; and our hearts and minds unite our nations.”
Nawaz Sharif said we are friends forever, in difficult and happy moments alike.
“We are good neighbours, close friends, dear brothers, and trusted partners. We have an all-weather, time-tested cooperative strategic partnership. We are truly iron brothers.”
The Prime Minister said leaders and representatives of all the political parties are here to welcome you. All political parties in Pakistan have one united stance: Pakistan should have a robust bond with China. This is also the aspiration of the constituents they represent and in fact the entire nation of Pakistan.
He assured President Xi that Pakistan considers China’s security as its own security. He said they would fight together to eliminate the menace of terrorism. Their joint efforts in this regard have succeeded but they need to intensify these efforts to accomplish their objective.
In the international forums, the Prime Minister said Pakistan will continue to support One China Policy and China’s stand on its core national interests.
He appreciated China’s solidarity with Pakistan in its quest for peace and stability in South Asia through engagement on all outstanding issues.
He applauded President Xi’s vision of ‘Community of Shared Destiny’, underpinned by “One Belt, One Road”. This vision is anchored in the strong desire of the continents of Asia, Africa and Europe to cement their common bonds for a better future.
Nawaz Sharif said Pakistan-China Economic Corridor is a product of the joint endeavours of our two countries at the conceptual and operational levels. It has moved fast into the implementation phase. This is a catalytic project that will help us to combine the geo-strategic and geo-economic streams of our relationship. It will benefit the entire country and all the provinces – Balochistan, Sindh, Punjab, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Gilgit Baltistan and Azad Jammu & Kashmir.
He said the Corridor will stimulate completion of the projects in the areas of transportation infrastructure, energy and industrial development. He thanked the Chinese leadership, state institutions, banks and corporations for supporting all these projects, especially power projects.
Nawaz Sharif said the Parliament, the Government and the people of Pakistan thank China for its commitment to help us resolve the energy crisis and make Pakistan self-sufficient in energy.
He said our defence ties are strong; and they are poised to become stronger in the years to come.
He said this year is the year of friendly exchanges. Let the youth of the two countries inherit this unique relationship that we have developed over the decades and take it to new heights. Our young entrepreneurs, academics, media-persons, teachers, students and professionals, will sustain our friendship and make it even more productive.
He termed President Xi’s visit and address as historic moment, and said we look at our relationship over the next fifteen years and beyond.
The Prime Minister concluded his address with a couplet from national poet – Allama Mohammad Iqbal: Open your eyes,look at the land, the skies and the air – Look at the rising sun from the East.
The Prime Minister said President Xi’s dream has not only galvanized the people of China, it has also inspired the people of Pakistan.