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Urumqi, Puyang and Xian named sister cities to Karachi, Gwadar and Multan respectively
ISLAMABAD: Chinese cities Urumqi, Puyang and Xi’an were declared as sister cities to Karachi, Gwadar, and Multan, respectively, at a forum held in Beijing on Thur¬sday to strengthen the bond of friendship between the two countries.

According to a press release issued here, federal Minister for Inter-Provincial Coordination Dr Fehmida Mirza headed a Pakistani delegation at the event during which Pakistani and Chinese officials signed separate agreements in this regard.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Mirza said Pakistan highly valued its relationship and mutual cooperation with China.

She expressed the hope that people-to-people contact and diplomatic visits between the two countries would further deepen bilateral relations at political, social, cultural and economical levels. She underscored the importance of the One Belt One Road project and termed it a milestone initiative for regional connectivity. The China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project was a basic pillar of Belt and Road Initiative under which most of the early harvest projects had been completed, especially in the fields of infrastructure and energy, she added.

The minister, on behalf of the people of Pakistan, acknowledged and appreciated China’s support for Pakistan in the recent situation and playing a role in de-escalating tension in South Asia.

She observed that the visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to China had given a new impetus to Pakistan-China friendship and opened up several new avenues of cooperation.

It was informed at the event that the forum would facilitate cooperation in province-city management, public health, environmental protection, poverty alleviation, trade and investment, tourism cooperation, urbanisation and vocational/professional education. It will enhance mutual understanding between enterprises of the two countries and boost economic and trade ties.

Pakistan’s Ambassador to China Masood Khalid and the Executive Vice Governor of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, Zhang Chunlin, also addressed the forum.

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