Pak, China enters new arrangement to deepen socio-economic partnership: CEN

BEIJING, Mar. 19 (INP): Pakistan and China signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for enhanced bilateral cooperation in the areas of science and technology, agriculture under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Director of National Development and Reform Commission He Lifeng and Pakistan’s Ambassador to China Naghmana Hashmi signed the MoU on behalf of the two governments. President Dr. Arif Alvi and President Xi Jinping witnessed the signing ceremony held at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing at the conclusion of a bilateral meeting between the two leaders.

According to China Economic Net (CEN), the MoU on Establishing Joint Working Group on Science and Technology and Agriculture between China and Pakistan leads to the establishment of two separate joint working groups, one on science and technology, and the other on agriculture, extending the joint working groups under CPEC to 10.

Besides the two newly established joint working groups for agriculture and science & technology, there are eight working groups already functional in a range of areas including planning, energy, transport, Special Economic Zones, international cooperation, Gwadar, security, and socio-economic development.

In a joint statement released by the two countries, Pakistan underscored that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a signature project of Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), was transformational.

A CPEC Authority was established to oversee the expeditious implementation of CPEC projects. Both sides maintained that the new phase of high-quality development of CPEC will promote industrialization and socio-economic development in Pakistan.
Both sides hoped that the 10th Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) meeting of CPEC, to be held soon, will further contribute to making CPEC a High-Quality Demonstration Project of BRI.
They stressed that the economic and social impact of CPEC on the region will be substantial and beneficial and hoped that the international community will support such efforts that underpin economic development.

In addition, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Affairs Han Changfu and Pakistan’s Ambassador Naghmana Hashmi signed the “MoU between the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs of China (MARA) and the Ministry of National Food Security and Research of Pakistan (NFS&R) on Strengthening Cooperation on Plant and Disease Control”.

In the future, the two countries will build a center for sustainable pest management in plants in Pakistan, focusing on all-round plant protection cooperation including monitoring and early warning, technology research and development, demonstration and promotion, mutual recognition of standards, personnel training and emergency prevention and control.