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ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari will leave for China Saturday (Saturday) on a two-day official visit for reviewing the entire gamut of bilateral relations, with a particular focus on stronger trade and economic cooperation between Pakistan and China.

Foreign Office spokesperson Asim Iftikhar said that at the special invitation of State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Foreign Minister Bilawal will visit China on 21-22 May 2022.

“This would be Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari’s first bilateral visit abroad since assuming office last month,” he said, adding that Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar and senior officials would be part of the foreign minister’s delegation.

During the visit, he added the Foreign Minister would hold extensive consultations with State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi.

“The two leaders will review the entire gamut of bilateral relations, with a particular focus on stronger trade and economic cooperation between Pakistan and China. Fast-tracked progress on the transformational China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, flagship project of President Xi Jinping’s visionary Belt and Road Initiative, will also feature in the discussions,” he said, adding the two sides would also have wide-ranging exchange of views on major regional and international issues.

He added that Bilawal’s visit would also coincide with the 71st anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Pakistan and China.

State Councilor Wang Yi had written a letter of congratulations to Foreign Minister Bilawal on his assumption of the office of Foreign Minister. The two Foreign Ministers had previously held a virtual meeting on 11 May 2022.

“The foreign minister’s visit is part of the high-level exchanges between the two sides, which recently also included message of felicitations to the Prime Minister from Premier Li Keqiang, and telephone conversation between the two Premiers on 16 May 2022,” the spokesperson added.

He stated that the Foreign Minister’s visit would contribute towards further fortifying the “time-tested All-Weather Strategic Cooperative Partnership” between Pakistan and China, enhance and deepen CPEC-related engagement, and help in identifying new avenues for bilateral cooperation to the benefit of the two countries and peoples.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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