(16 October, 2016)
Hon. Pervaiz Rashid, Minister of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage,
Hon. Wang Heshan, Vice Governor of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region,
Distinguished guests, Ladies and gentlemen,
Aslam Alegum and a very good morning to you all!
It is great pleasure for me to attend the friendly exchange & tourism promotion activity of walking in Pakistan-China friendship today. On behalf of the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan, I would like to thank Honorable Minister Pervaiz Rashid for gracing the ceremony. I warmly welcome Honorable Vice Governor Wang Heshan. I would also like to extend my warmest congratulations to all delegates for overcoming all difficulties and reaching Islamabad successfully!
Ladies and gentlemen,
Since more than 2,000 years ago, China and Pakistan have been connected through the great Silk Road. Along this road, businessmen and envoys travelled through mountains and deserts, trading specialties and learning exotic cultures. One of the most prominent travellers is Xuanzang, who lived in the 7th century. From Xi’an, then capital of China, he travelled 80,000 kilometers to South Asia. He lived in Taxila for 3 years, studied language and classics, and brought precious Buddhist scriptures back from there.
The Silk Road has brought well-being and prosperity for the people along the route. Nonetheless, by promoting exchanges among ethnic groups, cultures and religions, the Silk Road advanced our civilizations, and cultivated the Silk Road spirit. There are three key points of this great spirit:
First, openness. Openness means confidence. Openness creates vitality. Openness brings progress. And only by openness can we achieve prosperity. As long as we uphold openness, no towering mountains or torrential waters can stop our friendly exchange. We will always open our doors to the outside world.
Secondly, inclusiveness and mutual learning. Along the Silk Road, all cultures are equal. We respect each other, appreciate each other, admire each other, and learn from each other. And thus we jointly create a splendid history. Ningxia is a best example of mutual learning and inclusiveness. It is an inland province with opening-up pilot economic zone. It is renowned as a beautiful piece of land where all ethnic groups live harmoniously.
Thirdly, win-win cooperation. The ancient Silk Road is now transforming into connectivity, industrial cooperation, trade and finance, and flow of information. Economies along this road are complementary with huge potential for cooperation. By promoting win-win cooperation, we will build an avenue towards joint development and shared destiny.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
In 2013, Chinese President Xi Jinping proposed the Belt and Road Initiatives, reviving the great Silk Road spirit. 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, with a total investment of 13.8 billion USD, and tens of thousands of new jobs have been created for local people. CPEC is for Pakistan as a whole with multiple passages. It will bring benefits to all Pakistani people. The passage going through western part of Pakistan to Gwadar is definitely part of CPEC. As we see it, all the routes lead to development and prosperity. Under the Belt and Road Initiatives, CPEC will make its contribution to reviving the Silk Road spirit.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Connectivity is made for facilitating people-to-people exchange. This year marks the 65th anniversary of China-Pakistan diplomatic ties. This car rally is titled “Walking in China-Pakistan friendship”. It is also an important activity to mark this special occasion. In the rally, you will not only experience the friendliness, but also promote our friendship at the same time. I hope by such events, we can further our win-win cooperation, and make the Silk Road spirit shine again in the new era.
In this regard, I would like to express my gratitude to the organizers and participants of this event. In 22 days, you have travelled more than 7000 km, all the way from Ningxia to here. You are real advocates of the great Silk Road Spirit! You are the envoys of China-Pakistan friendship! Thank you for bringing our peoples’ hearts closer together!
After Pakistan, you will head for countries in the Middle-east along the Gulf. I wish you safety and happiness in your rest trip! I wish the Car Rally a full success!
Chin Pak Dosdi Zindabad!