(November 19, 2016 The Chinese Embassy)
Distinguished Madam Badar Asan,
Distinguished Madam Najia Ahmed Aziz,
Ladies and gentleman,
Good morning and welcome to Sangam Club 2016 Gala!
It is my great pleasure to invite you all to the Chinese Embassy on such a sunny and pleasant day!
Today is a memorable moment for the founding of the Sangam Club. In Urdu, “sangam” means conflux of rivers. Friends present today are coming from all walks of life in Pakistan. You have made great contribution to the solid and enduring China-Pakistan friendship. Indeed, all of you are the rivers converging and flowing towards the deep and broad sea of China-Pakistan friendship. Sangam Club is a new platform for the Pakistani friends who have visited China organized by the Chinese Embassy in the past few years. It is on voluntary basis and will keep expanding. It will enable the members to communicate with each other and share the experience of visiting China. It will surely help promote China-Pakistan friendship.
Ladies and gentleman,
Water has a profound meaning in Chinese culture. Chinese people are very much fond of water, river and ocean. Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu says, “The top virtue of men is like water. Water benefits all things and competes with none.” Water is everywhere and none can survive without it, so is the deep friendship between China and Pakistan. China has a saying that “the ocean can hold the water from thousands of rivers. It is broad because of its inclusiveness.” We often say the China-Pakistan friendship is deeper than the sea. It is because of the friendship from you like flowing rivers into the sea that our friendship could be built so broad and so deep!
We are living in a fast-changing and interdependent world. We are lucky to witness the grand development of China-Pakistan relations. We are proud of so many great changes and achievements between the two fraternal countries. During the successful visit of President Xi Jinping to Pakistan last April, both sides agreed to uplift our relations to the all-weather strategic cooperative partnership. As the major and pilot project of the Belt and Road Initiative, China-Pakistan Economic Corridor has entered into full implementation with remarkable progress. 16 early harvest projects are under construction. Tens of thousands of new jobs have been created for local people. For the last two years, China has been the largest trading partner to Pakistan. Also for the last two years, China has been the largest source of foreign direct investment to Pakistan. Both countries support each other on a range of international and regional issues. Our relationship is characterized by mutual benefits and win-win cooperation. It is getting stronger and stronger with each passing day.
China-Pakistan relationship needs extensive support and active participation from all of you. It is the best of times for us to deepen the all-round cooperation. We should take this historical opportunity to build a better China-Pakistan relationship in the future.
You are coming from all walks of life. Some of you are government officials, some are scholars, some are media practioners, some are artists, some are teachers and some are students. However, you have one thing in common, that is you are the brothers and sisters of Chinese and have made remarkable contribution to further our friendship. You are the folk ambassadors of friendship for China-Pakistan relations. I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your support for China-Pakistan friendship.
Sangam Club is your new home to share views and make friends. Please share with us your touching stories, unforgettable experience, creative ideas and recommendations. Your contribution will be highly appreciated and greatly valued. Sangam Club will hold more activities for the members to learn about China and Chinese culture. The Chinese Embassy will continue to support the development of Sangam Club. The door of the Chinese Embassy is always open to you all.
Our new journey is about to take off, just like a famous Urdu poem that says, “Dost to hum bahot burane hain. Aao, ik sangam naya sajate hain!”(We are long-time sincere friends. Let’s come together to start the new journey.) So let’s join hands together towards our common dream of the community of shared destiny!
Wish Sangam Club a great success!
Chin-Pak dosti zindabad!