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Peking University co-organizes symposium on promoting China-Pakistan industrial cooperation

MAY . 26 2021
Peking University, May 21, 2021: To celebrate the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Pakistan and to promote the all-round cooperation and the development of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the Symposium on Promoting China-Pakistan Industrial Cooperation and Industrial Parks Construction was held at Peking University between May 18 and May 19. The event was co-organized by PKU Center for Pakistani Studies, Pakistani Embassy in China, and Guangdong Institute for International Strategies.

During the conference, experts and entrepreneurs of the two countries engaged in in-depth discussions and dialogues on four topics: problems China-Pakistan industrial cooperation is facing; the key areas, direction, and key measures of China-Pakistan industrial cooperation; how private enterprises can make good use of the advantages of China-Pakistan cooperation; and how cooperative platforms for enterprises of the two countries in the industrial cooperation can be built. More than 100 experts made addresses at the conference, and over 100 scholars participated in the event online.

Professor Ning Qi, dean of PKU School of Foreign Languages, executive deputy director of PKU Institute of Area Studies, delivered a welcoming speech. Professor Ning pointed out that as early as 2,000 years ago, the ancient Silk Road closely linked the people of China and Pakistan. On May 21, 1951, China and Pakistan established diplomatic relations, marking a new beginning of China-Pakistan friendship, one that is regarded as a model of friendly coexistence between countries.

Professor Tang Mengsheng, director of PKU Center for Pakistani Studies, said since the diplomatic relations between China and Pakistan was established 70 years ago, the all-weather partnership between China and Pakistan has yielded fruitful results with the joint efforts of leaders and people of the two countries. Pakistan has extended a helping hand when China faced difficulties, and the Chinese people are happy to help Pakistan realize the vision of “New Pakistan” as soon as possible. The CPEC will benefit all the people of Pakistan.

Nong Rong, Chinese ambassador to Pakistan, said working together to develop the industrial parks is the key to the quality development of CPEC. The complementary nature of the two countries’ resources, industrial structure and consumption structure have created favorable conditions for industrial cooperation. It is hoped that the governments, business associations and enterprises of both sides will leverage the China-Pakistan agricultural and industrial cooperation platforms to carry out promotional activities, strengthen economic exchanges, and attract more entities to participate in bilateral industrial and agricultural cooperation. Meanwhile, he hopes that universities and think tanks can offer advice in a bid to drive the quality development of CPEC.

Moin ul Haque, Pakistani ambassador to China, said the friendship between Pakistan and China is deeply rooted in the hearts of the two nations. It is recognized that CPEC is a high-quality demonstration project of the Belt and Road Initiative. Pakistan’s infrastructure and business environment have greatly improved due to the project. In the future, more new projects will be launched to further implement industrial cooperation under the framework of CPEC. Pakistan is committed to creating a safer and better environment to promote long-term development. He also pointed out that despite the challenges brought by COVID-19, the CPEC will continue to advance steadily and achieve more results.

Asim Saleem Bajwa, chairman of CPEC Authority, said all projects of CPEC in the first phase, including energy and infrastructure projects, have achieved remarkable results. What requires consideration now is how to further integrate resources to promote the implementation of industrial and agricultural cooperation projects.

Asad Umar, Pakistan’s minister for planning, development and special initiatives, said the cooperation between Pakistan and China is based on mutual benefit and win-win cooperation. In the next phase, Pakistan will work on attracting foreign investment. In terms of finance and business, Pakistan is also about to introduce new policies to bring more convenience and benefits to foreign investors.

In addition, Chinese scholars and entrepreneurs also gave advice on China-Pakistan industrial cooperation. Other industrial representatives expressed their thoughts on how to enter Pakistani market, especially how to participate in the development of industrial parks in Pakistan. With market surveys, research and field entrepreneurial experience, they have great expectations for the prospects of China-Pakistan industrial cooperation.

In his concluding remarks, Professor Tang Mengsheng said participants of the conference all put forward helpful suggestions on the development of the CPEC. However, there are still issues that are worthy of further discussion, such as the direction and focus of industrial cooperation, how to pool effective resources for larger projects, the establishment of Pakistan’s home-field awareness, and how to improve people’s livelihood. These issues still require further research and discussion between scholars from both countries, thus providing decision-making suggestions for the two governments.

Written by: Artemis Wan-Ting Huang
Edited by: Ma Yaoli
Source: PKU News (Chinese)