Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday supported China’s efforts to safeguard world peace, contribute to global development, and preserve international order, stressing that Sino-Pak friendship remained strong anchor for peace in an era of complex and profound changes at global and regional level.
Addressing a conference of the world political parties, held virtually to mark the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China (CPC), Imran drew similarities in his vision of ‘Naya Pakistan’ and China’s mission of ‘Great Rejuvenation of the Chinese nation’.
Imran, the chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), told the ‘CPC and World Political Parties Summit’ that the CPC’s achievements of national development, poverty alleviation and anti-corruption campaign, were remarkable. “It is something we hope to emulate in Pakistan,” he said.
“CPC’s astonishing success rests in the people-centric approach of its inclusive development philosophy. It remained committed to serve the people and prioritize their well-being and interests. CPC’s achievements have opened new vistas of thought for political parties across the world,” he said.
Imran emphasised that political parties could only enjoy public support and legitimacy if they continued to serve the people selflessly. “CPC’s mission of ‘Great Rejuvenation of the Chinese nation’ and PTI’s vision of ‘Naya Pakistan’ reflect the respective aspirations of the peoples of our two countries,” he said.
The prime minister praised President Xi Jinping for his visionary leadership that played a pivotal role in China’s transformation and continued rise and said that “Pakistan supports China’s efforts to safeguard world peace, contribute to global development, and preserve international order”.
He also supported Xi’s vision of shared prosperity, saying that the president’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), had made a major impact on global sustainable development, thus proving his credentials as a world statesman. He also praised China’s success against the Covid-19 pandemic.
Imran said that the PTI was formed 25 years ago on the principles of accountability, transparency, meritocracy and Islamic welfare to break the vicious cycle of elite capture, corruption and nepotism. He added that his party remained committed to its original mission.
On the occasion he highlighted his government’s social protection programmes, including Ehsaas Programme, universal health coverage scheme, Ehsaas Sahulat programme and flagship 10 Billion Tree Tsunami project.
“In the wake of emerging global and regional environment, Pakistan has recalibrated its priorities from geo-politics to geo-economics,” he said. “China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC)… complements Pakistan’s renewed efforts of this geo-economic shift with emphasis on economic integration and regional connectivity,” he added.
Imran mentioned that 2021 marked the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Pakistan and China. “Our two nations are celebrating this historic milestone in a befitting manner,” the prime minister noted.
Concluding his speech, Imran said: “I am confident that the year 2021 would provide new vigour and vitality to our time-tested friendship… We must join hands to advance the noble cause of peace and development, welfare of our peoples, and building ‘Community of Shared Future for All Mankind’.”
The event was also addressed by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President and Opposition leader in National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) chief and Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) President Maulana Fazlur Rehman.
Shehbaz said that the credit for China’s peaceful rise as the world second largest economy and a paramount global power went to the “vision and dedication” of the CPC. “The CPC and China are the two sides of the same coin and it was nearly impossible to distinguish between the two,” he added.
Shehbaz said that the theme for the summit ‘People’s Wellbeing The Responsibilities Of Political Parties’ was the most apt and relevant to the realities of the contemporary times. He added that CPC had led from the front for the wellbeing of the Chinese people as well as the international community.
Shehbaz said China achieved “epic success” not merely through chance but through dogged resolve and masterful planning. “Two elements have made China great, the endless energy, creativity and hard work of the people and the generations of leadership provided by the CPC,” he added.
Praising the CPC General Secretary Xi Jinping, the PML-N president noted that the BRI was a manifestation of “the great vision of cooperation of Chinese president’s quest for national rejuvenation based on a community of shared interests”.
“In addition to advocating and defending the idea of economic globalisation, China under President Xi Jinping had demonstrated global leadership in helping the Third World in battling the coronavirus pandemic through massive donations of vaccine as a greater public good,” he said.
Concluding his speech, Shehbaz said that China was bringing the much-needed balancing and stabilising influence on the world order and as a strong advocate of multilateral global order under the auspices of the UN Charter.
He thanked the international department of the CPC for inviting him to this historic anniversary event. “This gesture speaks volumes about the excellent relationship that the CPC and the PML-N continue to enjoy at a party-to-party level since the last few decades,” he said.
Fazl also appreciated the Chinese leadership and the ruling party for their achievements in their struggle for the people’s rights. He mentioned that the CPC laid a network of factories, industries and crafts and made projects in the agricultural sector which made China a superpower.
Under the leadership of President Xi, the JUI-F chief said, China had emerged as a global, political, military and economic power. “China continues to play a role in maintaining the balance of power, internationally,” he added.
He said that the CPC had a longstanding relationship with the JUI-F. Both the parties, he added, had similar views on Kashmir and Palestine issues which would help bring the two parties closer. “We want to see positive results from these relations in the region and in the bilateral relations,” Fazl added.
The JUI-F chief said that the CPEC was a plan for peace, development and prosperity for the world. “China has given a new dimension to friendship with Pakistan by signing the CPEC agreement, Fazl told the conference.