Wednesday, 14 November, 2018

China visit to pay dividends soon: PM

Pakistan       by Mahmood Idrees | Published Pakistan by Mahmood Idrees | Published
Ellis Copeland | 09 November, 2018, 18:52

As Prime Minister Imran Khan landed in China on a state visit this week that has large financial assistance hopes on the agenda, the Pakistan Television Corporation (PTV) channel ticker displayed a Freudian slip: the Chinese capital was spelt as Begging instead of Beijing.

"It appears that both countries are engaged in negotiations on a financial assistance package, including the import of more Pakistani goods, which would obviate the need for the International Monetary Fund bailout, at least for the time being", he said.

The MD of the channel, Col (R) Hassan Immad Mohammadi, has been removed from his post with immediate effect until further notice, as per an order by the Government of Pakistan.

He said a high-level delegation will visit China to work out the modalities of payments to Pakistan on November 9.

"We decided that our strategic dialogue must be upgraded and its level be raised to the foreign ministers level", he said.

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"Qureshi said the two sides also discussed to initiate the second phase of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC)".

Umar said that after these commitments by China, Pakistan's balance of payments issue was effectively resolved.

Imran Khan had highlighted the need of high level exchanges between the two countries and collaboration at operational level to benefit from each other's expertise. "China took 700 million people out of poverty during the last 30 years we can learn a lot from China's experience because one-third of our population lives under the poverty line", the foreign minister said. "This tour helped in moving the strategic relationship to an economic partnership", he said. "We will continue to offer assistance and support within our capacity to Pakistan for its economic and social development in light of its needs and upon agreement by both sides", the spokesperson said.

The information minister said a deadlock between the government and the opposition on the issue of appointment of chairman of the Public Accounts Committee persisted, adding that the government could not accept Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shahbaz Sharif as PAC chairman.

The foreign minister underscored that the successful visit had also trashed the notion that Pakistan-China friendship would suffer under the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government.

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