islamabad-Federal Minister for Planning and  Development Ahsan Iqbal on Monday said that government is supporting higher education sector to prepare suitable human resource for China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

The minister said this while addressing inaugural ceremony of first Pakistan China Forum on Higher Education at Air University jointly organised by Higher Education Commission (HEC) and China Association of Higher Education.

The one-day forum was organised under the title of ‘Challenges of Equitable Access and Quality in Higher Education’ and was attended by academicians of Pakistan and China.

The minister stated that government’s support to HEC aims at capacity-building of existing higher education institutes (HEIs) to prepare suitable human resource for CPEC and promote cultural harmony between the two countries.

Welcoming the Chinese scholars to Pakistan, the minister said that mutual cooperation would help in exploring new ways of research.

Speaking on the occasion, the minister appreciated the efforts of Higher Education Commission (HEC) for building CPEC University Alliance and CPEC Consortium of Business Schools.

“China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) meant Pakistan’s entry into global supply chain,” said the minister.

He also stated that such efforts will help build collaborative linkages and intellectual connectivity which symbolize the spirit of CPEC. Executive Director (ED) HEC, Dr Arshad Ali in his address said that higher education is not a goal but a pre-requisite in a knowledge-based economy. The forum focused on three areas national role and contribution in improving quality of higher education, ensuring quality with large-scale increase in access, and balancing quality of higher education in diverse regions.

The forum started with a welcome note from the Vice Chancellor, Air University, AVM (R) Faaiz Amir and a scholarly exposition of the theme by Lt Gen (R) Muhammad Asghar, Consultant CPEC at HEC.

The leader of the Chinese delegation, Xiaomei Wang, highlighted the need for greater cooperation between the academia of the two countries.

The distinguished speakers of the Plenary Session included Dr Sohail H Naqvi, VC LUMS, Xiaomei Wang, Deputy Secretary General of China Association of Higher Education, Imtiaz Ali Rastgar, Chairman Rastgar Group of Companies, Fan XiaoXian, China Association of Higher Education, and Dr Mahmood ul Hassan Butt, Consultant, HEC (Moderator).

The Forum ended with a comprehensive summing up by Dr Muhammad Latif, Adviser (R&D), HEC and closing Remarks by the head of Chinese delegation Xiaomei Wang. Dr Arshad Ali, the Executive Director of HEC was the chief guest at the closing ceremony.