ISLAMABAD - Chinese President Xi Jinping would come to Pakistan next month on an official visit during which both the countries could sign memorandum of understandings (MoUs) pertaining to various projects regarding Pak-China Economic Corridor (PCEC).

Sources said Pakistan and China would sign several MoUs during the upcoming visit of the Chinese president in September. However, the Chinese Embassy sources did not share the exact dates of Xi Jinping’s arrival in Islamabad as they said their foreign office would announce the dates of his visit which is expected in September.  The forthcoming visit of the Chinese president next month would open new avenues for cooperation between the two countries as China will be assisting Pakistan in 14 energy projects and four mega infrastructure projects, including Karakorum Highway Phase-II, development of Gawadar Port, Lahore-Karachi Motorway and Orange Line Metro Project in Lahore.

Meanwhile, Chinese Ambassador Sun Weidong called on Finance Minister Senator Ishaq Dar at the Ministry of Finance Wednesday to discuss economic cooperation between the two countries.

The ambassador, while expressing his gratitude on the expanding economic cooperation between the two countries, said, “We are happy to see Pakistan-China Economic Corridor moving ahead smoothly.” He mentioned that, currently, third round of Pakistan-China Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) was going on successfully and mega projects in energy and infrastructure sectors with the help of Chinese government would bring development and economic progress to Pakistan. He said China, as a friend, would continue to take this relationship to a new height. He concluded: “Our traditional friendship is close to the hearts of the Chinese leadership and economic corridor will provide us with a framework to bring substantial cooperation on ground.

Speaking on this occasion, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar said China had always been a great friend of Pakistan and it was an all-weather relationship.

He mentioned the strong cooperation and common stand at international forums by the two countries and appreciated unprecedented support by China. He asserted the political leadership of both the countries had a common vision and talk of the robust economic cooperation, reducing their differences and regional connectivity.

He said: “Credit goes to the leadership of both the countries on convergence of their thinking.” The finance minister said the government was looking forward to expand mutual relations to a new height and replace traditional diplomacy with economic diplomacy.

He said the economic corridor would reduce transportation cost between Pakistan and China and enhance trade and investment for a great future of this region.

The finance minister further said the energy and infrastructure projects with the help of the Chinese government would contribute to economic progress of Pakistan and it was recognised by the masses in Pakistan. He hoped the projects in pipeline would be completed on time. He told the ambassador that the political leadership in Pakistan was looking forward to welcoming the Chinese president’s historic visit and hoped it would usher in a new era of progress and development of the two countries.

Economic Affairs Secretary Saleem Sethi, Finance Ministry Adviser Rana Asad Amin, Additional Finance Secretary/SA to Finance Minister Shahid Mahmood and senior officials of the Ministry of Finance also attended the meeting.