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Special> Premier Li's First Foreign Trip> News
UPDATED: May 23, 2013
Li Raises Five-Point Proposal for Boosting Ties With Pakistan

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang presented Wednesday a five-point proposal for further deepening friendship and cooperation with Pakistan.

He made the suggestions during talks with Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari and Interim Prime Minister Mir Hazar Khan Khoso, during which the two sides reached important consensuses on boosting the bilateral strategic cooperative partnership.

"China-Pakistan ties are time-tested. The two countries are all-weather friends and partners that can trust and rely on each other," said the Chinese premier.

Despite the complex and volatile regional and global circumstances, the two countries have already maintained sound strategic communication and coordination, Li noted.

China, he said, has always treated the relationship with Pakistan as a foreign policy priority, and is ready to work with Pakistan to maintain the traditional friendship, promote comprehensive cooperation and achieve common development.

In order to deepen the China-Pakistan strategic cooperative partnership, Li proposed, the two neighbors should firstly strengthen strategic communication and coordination, maintain high-level contact, and thus steer the bilateral relationship forward.

Secondly, the two countries should reinforce strategic and long-term planning, and open up new cooperation areas such as connectivity and maritime sectors, the Chinese premier said.

They should start formulating a long-term plan for the China-Pakistan economic corridor project and gradually push forward its construction, added the premier.

Thirdly, Li suggested, China and Pakistan further raise the level of bilateral trade and realize a dynamic balance while expanding the scale of two-way trade.

China, he said, encourages Chinese enterprises to participate in Pakistan's infrastructure construction.

Fourthly, the two sides should boost people-to-people and cultural exchanges and media cooperation, said the Chinese premier, adding that they also need to expand exchanges between their young generations so as to carry forward their traditional friendship.

Fifthly, he urged the two countries to promote cooperation in regional and global affairs and safeguard the common interests of developing countries.

China respects the development path Pakistan has chosen based on its own realities, and will continue to support Pakistan in defending its independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, Li said.

China, he added, is willing to provide unconditional help within its capacity for Pakistan's economic development and seek common advancement in state governance through exchanges and mutual learning.

For his part, Zardari said Li's visit, coming at a time when Pakistan is going through historic changes, sets another important milestone in bilateral ties and will further push forward the relationship between the two countries.

"China is a true friend and reliable partner of Pakistan," said Zardari, expressing sincere gratitude to Beijing for its long-term support for and assistance to his country.

Pakistan, he said, is glad to see and admires China's development achievements.

He added that his country is willing to grasp the opportunities brought about by China's rapid development and join hands with Beijing to deepen bilateral cooperation in various fields, so as to improve the well-being of the two peoples and promote regional and global peace, stability and development.

During the day, Li had in-depth talks with leaders from different Pakistani political parties on cementing bilateral ties. Li thanked them for their contribution to the China-Pakistan relationship.

Noting that maintaining the friendship with China is a national consensus, the party leaders pledged to play a positive role in promoting bilateral friendship in the future.

Li flew in Wednesday from India, the first leg of his ongoing maiden trip abroad as premier, which will also take him to Switzerland and Germany.

(Xinhua News Agency May 22, 2013)

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