China, Pakistan to sign 20 agreements/MOUs during Wen Jiabao visit

ISLAMABAD: China and Pakistan will sign 20 agreements and Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) during visit of Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao.This was stated by China’s ambassador to Pakistan Liu Jian in an interview to APP here on Tuesday.He said China’s Premier Wen Jiabao and Pakistani leadership will hold wide ranging discussions to draw a five year blueprint to expand their economic and trade relations.He said the top priority of the visit of Chinese Premier to Pakistan will be to further solidify already strong strategic ties with medium and short term plans of action.China’s Premier Wen Jiabao will pay a three day official visit to Pakistan from December 17 to 19.This will be the second visit of the Chinese Prime Minister during which he will hold talks with the Pakistani leadership on bilateral, regional and international issues of mutual interest.
The ambassador said Wen Jiabao will be leading a large business delegation from China. The delegation comprising more than 250 business leaders will attend a business summit. The two sides are expected to sign 20 Memorandum of Understandings (MOUs), which will convey a message of growing ties, he added. The ambassador said the visit will be of great significance as both countries will emphasise on deepening and broadening their ties in multi-faceted fields.

“Pakistan and China are good friendly neighbours with long history of relations spread over decades.”Both countries will celebrate 60 years of their diplomatic relations next year.Liu Jian said not only governments of two countries have a growing strategic partnership but their people are also coming closer with exchange of youth visits and scholarships for each others students.He said both sides are now aiming to take their ties to a new height by building up on their remarkable mutual achievements in various areas including economy, trade, investment, energy, communication, agriculture and defence production.The ambassador said at present Pakistan is China’s second largest trading partner in South Asia and China is Pakistan’s third largest trading partner, third largest import source and fifth largest export market of Pakistan.He said the bilateral trade was growing as in the first nine months of this year, the volume grew by 29 percent as compared to last year and China’s imports rose by 36 percent during the same period.
Calling ties of Pakistan and China as time tested and all weather, he said both countries are playing a critical role for regional peace and stability.He mentioned the assistance given by both countries to each other in the aftermath of natural disasters.
China gave sincere and timely help to Pakistan during tragedy of floods and was taking active part in the reconstruction phase, the envoy said.

He appreciated that political leadership of Pakistan will be  together when Premier Wen Jiabao will attend official events. Liu Jian said the visit will prove to be a milestone and further consolidate Pak-Sino relations.He said China respects Pakistan’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and its system of governance based on national traditions. All of Pakistani leadership is welcomed to visit his country any time, he added.He said President Zardari has better understanding of China as he shared experiences during his earlier six visits to China. The ambassador said Pakistan made great endeavours and offered sacrifices in the fight against terror and China respects its continuing efforts to implement strategy against militancy.Referring to the cooperation in energy sector, he said there are 120 ongoing bilateral projects which will bring tangible benefits to the people of Pakistan.The ambassador said besides meeting top leadership of Pakistan, Wen Jiabao will interact with common people who contributed in strengthening bonds between the two neighbours.The talks will also focus on enhancing people to people contacts and increasing the number of scholarships – App