ISLAMABAD: The Chinese Embassy in Pakistan on Friday hosted a grand reception to mark National Day of the People’s Republic of China. The day falls on October 1. At the outset, national anthems of the two countries were played by children of the Pak-China Government Primary School Gwadar. A Chinese troupe presented the country’s traditional art performance. Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani was the chief guest, who spoke high of the growing China-Pakistan friendship and reiterated Pakistan’s commitment to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). He also praised Chinese President Xi Jinping’s vision of shared destiny, stating that people of Pakistan were jubilant over the economic rise of China. The event was attended by the Chinese Ambassador Yao Jing as well as a large number of guests, including leaders of political parties, federal ministers, parliamentarians, senior civil and military officers, foreign diplomats, members of think tanks, media persons and representatives of Chinese companies working in Pakistan. Prominent among those were Opposition Leader in National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif, former prime minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gillani and Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor. In his welcoming speech, the ambassador deliberated upon the China’s economic rise and its leading role in the world’s affairs in promoting President Xi’s concept of shared destiny, particularly in the context of Belt and Road Initiative. China had made remarkable achievements in recent years, becoming the second largest economy and contributing to over 30 percent of global annual growth. Expressing full confidence in the bright future of China’s development, he said that China – in the recent years – had made great achievements, which were also a source of strength for the entire world for common development. While praising the growing Sino-Pak strategic ties, Yao Jing said that multilateral mutually beneficial partnership had reached a new height following the construction of the CPEC. “The CPEC has added a new dimension to the bilateral ties.” He reiterated that China would continue to stand by Pakistan for its socio-economic development and prosperity of its people. China, he added under the strong leadership of President Xi, had made great achievements. “We adhered to the path of peaceful development, advancing reform and opening up and firmly promoting mutual beneficial and win-win cooperation.” Yao Jing expressed his confidence that a prosperous and strong China would make even greater contribution to world peace and development. “We would like to share our development opportunities with the world. We are also ready to make joint efforts with all countries to build the community of shared prosperity for mankind.” In his speech, the Senate chairman conveyed warmest greetings to the people and the government of China on their national day. “We highly value our relations with China,” he added. “Friendship with China is a cornerstone of Pakistan’s foreign policy and the change of government in the country does not affect our bilateral ties in any manner whatsoever. The two sides enjoy complete trust and understanding in the bilateral ties, including construction of CPEC’s related projects. We are grateful to China for its all-out support. The CPEC is a manifestation of our common objectives and shared destiny,” he added. Published in Daily Times, September 29th 2018.