By: Amjad Aziz Malik
Recently, His Excellency Nong Rong, Ambassador of China to Pakistan visited Peshawar. This was his first visit to Peshawar since his appointment as Chinese Ambassador. During the visit, he met Chief Minister Mehmood Khan, officials of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Board of Investment and the Economic Zones Management Committee regarding the Rashkai Economic Zone,s briefing, inaugurated a project to rebuild schools in Bara, met Governor Shah Farman, attended the Pak-China Friendship Association function, visited China Window, met with media representatives and visited the Historical Museum in Peshawar. This one-day visit can be termed as very important because in the coming days the importance of Peshawar and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, which used to be less important due to the distance from the sea, has now increased due to the Rashakai Special Economic Zone and trade to Afghanistan and Central Asian. The establishment of industrial estates in many other districts of the province will undoubtedly contribute to the economic development of the region and the well-being of the people. In this context, Chinese Ambassador Nong Rong briefed by the Javed Iqbal Khattak, Chief Executive Officer, KP Economic Zones Management Committee, that all resources were being utilized to provide facilities to investors. ۔ On the occasion, Provincial Additional Chief Secretary Shakeel Qadir also briefed the Chinese Ambassador about the facilities provided by the provincial government to the industrialists. Nong Rong expressed satisfaction over the steps taken by the provincial government but suggested that free facility should be provided to the industrialists to bring the raw material from the port to the factory. He was assured by the provincial government that the matter would be looked into. After the encouraging meeting, Chinese Ambassador Nong Rong along with Asim Saleem Bajwa called on Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Mehmood Khan. After the one-on-one meeting, the Secretary, Provincial Planning Department briefed them on a plan for the reconstruction of schools in Bara which had been targeted by terrorists.
In the first phase of the project, 50 schools destroyed due to terrorism in Bara Tehsil of Khyber District will be rebuilt, including 24 Boys ‘Schools and 26 Girls’ Schools. The total estimated cost of the project is Rs. 2323 million out of which Rs. 868 million will be provided by the Government of Pakistan while 10.29 million will be provided by the Chinese Government. The project will be completed by January 2023. Welcoming the Chinese Ambassador to Peshawar, Chief Minister Mehmood Khan said that the friendship between Pakistan and China is time tested and the CPEC project is a living example. He added that he was grateful to the Chinese government for its assistance in rebuilding the damaged schools in the tribal districts and appreciated the Chinese government’s cooperation. Chinese Ambassador to Nong Rong said that the friendship between Pakistan and China is deeper than the sea and higher than the Himalayas and the Chinese government is keen to further strengthen the friendly relations with Pakistan. He added that Pakistan-China bilateral relations and areas of mutual interest. Cooperation is ideal. The Chinese Ambassador further said that the Chinese government is also keen to work in the areas of poverty alleviation and economic development in Pakistan.
After the meeting, Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Mahmood Khan and Chinese Ambassador Nong Rong formally inaugurated the project to rebuild the destroyed schools in the merged districts. An agreement was also signed between the Department of Education and the relevant Chinese authorities on the implementation of the school reconstruction project. In a meeting between Governor Shah Farman and the Chinese Ambassador, Shah Farman welcomed the guest on his arrival in Peshawar and assured him of all possible cooperation in further strengthening the Pak-China friendship. Governor Khyber Pakhtunkhwa briefed the Chinese Ambassador about the potential of five sectors in the province, namely olive, honey, fresh and dried fruits, saffron and precious stones. There are great opportunities for economic development through the development of these sectors Create vast employment opportunities.
The Chinese Ambassador expressed interest in working in these areas and said that work would be started in the above five areas on the basis of an excellent relationship system and a comprehensive strategy would be formulated at the governmental and business level for these areas. The Chinese Ambassador said that the Chinese Embassy would extend all possible policy support to the Chinese companies for working in these fields and would draw the attention of the Chinese companies to take advantage of the vital potential of Pakistani olives and precious stones. He said that the people of the two countries have fraternal and friendly relations and the people of the two countries are committed to work together for economic and social development. The meeting was very pleasant and everyone was very happy with the warm welcome extended to the Chinese diplomats. Given
The Chinese Ambassador also visited China Window, a Chinese cultural and information center in Peshawar. Chinese Ambassador Nong Rong visited various sectors of China Window and appreciated the efforts of the management. He was also shown a special documentary film of China Window in which he took a keen interest, he cut the cake in celebration of the completion of seventy years of Pak-China diplomatic relations. On this occasion, the Chinese Ambassador formally inaugurated China Window’s website. He also signed on the Pak-China Friendship Wall and recorded his impressions in the guest book. He was informed on the occasion that more than 26,000 people have visited the centre since its inception. The Chinese Ambassador appreciated the services of the organizers and announced to continue all possible cooperation for China Window.
A meeting was also arranged with the Chinese Ambassador and representatives of print and electronic media and a large number of media persons attended the briefing. Chinese Ambassador Nong Rong said that he had received a great deal of encouragement during his visit to Peshawar. I am very happy that the Chinese Cultural and Information Center China Window in Peshawar is playing an important role in introducing Chinese culture in the Province. We acknowledge its services and hope that the Chinese embassy will continue to support China Window. Ambassador hoped that the window will continue to play a role in bringing the people of the two countries and people of different schools of thought closer together. He said that we are grateful to China Window for hosting a special function at China Window on the occasion of the completion of 70 years of Pak-China diplomatic relations. Expressing his sentiments regarding the visit to China Window, he said that China Window Center It is a great pleasure to visit. China Window is an excellent example of mutual cooperation at the level of cultural, economic and CPEC. Replying to a question on C-Pack, Chinese Ambassador Nang Rong said that the pace of work on CPEC was not slowing down but the fruits of this great project would soon reach the common people of Pakistan. Are done He said that the history of Pak-China friendship. Over a period of seven decades, the top leadership of both countries believe in mutual development. Pakistan and China are brothers, living together in every difficult time. He said that China has also ensured mutual cooperation with Pakistan in the case of coronavirus, especially in the field of vaccine and will defeat covid 19 with collective efforts. He said China is cooperating in Orange Line, Gawadar Port and other development projects. He said that CPEC projects are progressing. New projects are also under consideration. There are many projects related to CPEC. There will be a lot of good news for the people. He further said that attention would be paid to alleviate the plight of Pakistani students studying in China. Nong Rong said that corona vaccination was going on in a better way in China which would improve the travel situation of students and the business community. He said that the process of arrival in China has started. He said that as conditions improve, students from both countries will be able to come more easily. The Chinese Ambassador said that he had several meetings with Prime Minister Imran Khan and the Army Chief which would yield encouraging results. He said that this was his first visit to Peshawar where he met the Governor and Chief Minister. The meetings have been very fruitful and he is confident that CPEC will also benefit Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and he is happy that the provincial government has assured him of all possible cooperation. Media plays an important role in the Pak-China friendship. CPEC is getting full attention. In this regard, he expressed confidence in expecting positive reporting from the media as well.
Chinese Ambassador Nong Rong also attended the function organized by Pak-China Friendship Association. Provincial Local Government Minister Akbar Ayub welcomed the ambassador. He said that there is no example of everlasting friendship like Pak-China which is always found in the world. Addressing the function, Akbar Ayub Khan welcomed Chinese Ambassador Nong Rong on his first visit to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and expressed the hope that Nong Rong during his diplomatic stay in Pakistan would enhance the friendly and bilateral relations between the two countries. We will further deepen and expand, especially the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project. Nong Rong likened Pak-China friendship to an evergreen and fruitful tree, saying that “climate change” does not affect the friendly relations between China and Pakistan., Syed Ali Nawaz Gilani introduced the Friendship Association and said that the journey of friendship which started with the establishment of Pak-China Students Friendship Association in 1970 continues today which has crossed many milestones of success. ۔
In the last leg of his one-day visit, Chinese Ambassador Nong Rong and other officials of the Chinese Embassy visited the History Museum in Peshawar. Director Archeology Abdul Samad received the distinguished guest. The Chinese Ambassador was informed that the history of the museum is very old and as the centre of Gandhara, this museum is famous all over the world. The Chinese Ambassador expressed confidence that this historic museum of Peshawar is the future. will also be the centre of attention for Chinese tourists.