Syed Ali Nawaz Gilani - The Chinese President His Excellency Xi Jinping is arriving today on state visit to Pakistan after taking over the office of President of the People’s Republic of China on March 14, 2013. In recent past the visit was postponed due to some pre-occupied engagements on both the sides. This visit is taking place in the backdrop of a very important geo-political and regional situation apart from further boosting the exemplary Pak-China relations. This visit is also very important from the Pakistan’s political and economic point of view as we are currently engaged in Pak-China Economic Corridor project which, if implemented in letter and spirit, will enhance our economic activities many folds and the country will ultimately prospers.

The visiting Chinese President who also Head of ruling Communist Party is expected to lead China for the next decade. Since assuming leadership, he has initiated an unprecedented and far-reaching campaign against corruption, called for further market economic reforms, governance according to the law, strengthening legal institutions, and an emphasis on individual and national aspirations under the neologism “Chinese Dream”. President Xi Jinping introduced this new term to lay out his vision of a stronger nation based on the Chinese Path the Chinese Spirit and Chinese Strength. This led some analysts to the view that he could pursue a more assertive foreign policy during his decade in power. His Excellency actually wants that the World second largest economy should take its rightful place in the world whereas the great nation works hard for the Chinese renaissance.

The 61 years old Chinese President His Excellency Xi Jinping belongs to a very committed family. He is the son of veteran Chinese revolutionary figure, Xi Zhongxun who was the founding fathers of Chinese Communist party. Xi Jinping was known as “intellectual youth” at his early young days while he was working in remote village of Liangjahe for around 6 years and was considered as very sincere and honest. He served as a local party secretary in Hebei Province before going to Fujian & Zhejiang provinces at senior positions where he shows his extraordinary capabilities. Less than a decade back in 2007, he was named as party chief in Shanghai a very important position for central leadership.

China and Pakistan share a border of just 523 kilometers but are the strongest neighbours and their relationship is ahead of normal diplomatic relations which was established in 1951. Most importantly the people to people interaction is more than anything. This visit was very much awaited by Pakistanis from last few months. China-Pakistan relationship has inspired plenty of florid language, invoking “Iron Brothers” whose “all-weather friendship” is “higher than the Himalayas & deeper than the oceans” and “Sweeter than Honey”. These words need to be translated in realties by taking full advantage of Chinese experiences in all fields of life. We in Pakistan must prepare ourselves to enjoy the fruits of economic development and socio-economic prosperity.

Decades old China-Pakistan relations witness strategic cooperation and partnership in recent years apart from political and cultural inter-actions. Both countries are serious in breakthrough on economic issues as well. Recently, long term plans like China-Pakistan Economic Corridor have been finalised and various MoUs signed in this regard to materialise the Chinese investment in Pakistan. The economic corridor is mainly about cooperation in three areas viz. energy, transport and industrial parks which will be a new platform for the growth of China-Pakistan strategic cooperation in the next five to ten years. Current year also have a special significance for China-Pakistan relations as the year 2015 has been declared as “Friendly Exchange Year”.

This visit is an excellent opportunity for the Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to prepare a proper plan to get benefited from China. The Province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa had been declared as friendly region with Xinjiang Region of China in 2008 whereas Peshawar and Urumqi, Abbottabad & Kashgar were declared as sister cities in 1985 and 2007 respectively. All these gestures can be used in a proper and favourable manner. Various NGOs under the banner of Pak-China Friendship can play vital role in promoting this friendship as deep routed love between people of both the countries.

(The writer is Secretary-General Pakistan-China Friendship Association)