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China’s Development Worthy of Emulation by Pakistan: Imran Khan

by Newsweek Pakistan

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Prime minister claims CPC and PTI’s visions for their respective countries reflect aspirations of their citizens

Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday reiterated that he hopes Pakistan will emulate China in achieving poverty alleviation, eradicating corruption, and advancing national development.

Addressing the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and World Political Parties Summit via video-link, he credited Beijing’s “astonishing success” in developing China to a “people-centric approach.” Referring to CPC founding chairman Mao Zedong, and his successor Deng Xiaoping, Khan said they had “guided the Chinese people in reclaiming national dignity, self-pride, self-respect and China’s rightful place in the world.” He claimed the CPC’s success had inspired colonized nations globally and contributed to the end of colonialism.

According to the prime minister, CPC’s achievement had “opened new vistas of thought for political parties across the world.” He claimed the party had proven that the sole goal of attaining political power should be bringing about transformation in the lives of citizens. “Indeed, political parties can only enjoy public support and legitimacy if they continue to serve the people selflessly,” he said.

Praising China President Xi Jinping’s “visionary leadership,” Khan said he had played a pivotal role in China’s transformation. “His people-centric philosophy has made a critical difference as recently China eliminated extreme poverty—one of the greatest achievements in the history of mankind,” he said and lauded Beijing for building a “moderate, prosperous society.”

The prime minister also praised President Xi’s vision of shared prosperity through the Belt and Road Initiative, saying it had made a major impact on global, sustainable development. He said Pakistan had “recalibrated its priorities from geo-politics to geo-economics” and the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor complemented this shift with “emphasis on economic integration and regional connectivity.”

PTI’s Pakistan

During his address, Khan said the CPC’s stated mission of a “great rejuvenation” of China and the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s vision of a “Naya Pakistan” reflected the “respective aspirations of the people of our two countries.” He said he had founded the PTI on the principles of accountability, transparency, meritocracy, and Islamic welfare, adding he wanted to break the cycle of elite capture, corruption and nepotism. “The PTI remains committed to its original mission of establishing rule of law and setting up a society that is humane and has compassion,” he claimed, pointing to the success of the Ehsaas welfare program.

“We have made Universal Health Coverage a priority in our health sector reforms. Under the Ehsaas Sahulat program, we aim to provide free of cost health insurance initially to families living below the poverty line, and subsequently to all families in provinces governed by the PTI,” he said.

The prime minister also spoke about Pakistan’s climate change initiatives, noting that the “10 Billion Tree Tsunami” reflected his government’s commitment to combating environmental degradation and reversing biodiversity loss. “We are ready to contribute more than our share to protect this invaluable planet and help it heal from centuries of neglect,” he stressed.

Noting that 2021 marked the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between Pakistan and China, Khan said the “abiding friendship” had seen both countries support each other on issues of their respective core interests. “In an era of complex and profound changes at global and regional level, our ‘All Weather Strategic Cooperative Partnership’ remains a strong anchor for peace, progress and prosperity,” he said.

“Our two nations are celebrating this historic milestone in a befitting manner. I am confident that the year 2021 would provide new vigor and vitality to our time-tested friendship,” he said and urged all those gathered to “join hands to advance the noble cause of peace and development, welfare of our peoples, and building a ‘Community of Shared Future for All Mankind’.”

Chaired by President Xi Jinping, the virtual summit is expected to be attended by over 500 political parties and more than 10,000 political workers and representatives from various parts of the world. In addition to Khan, 20 other world leaders are also expected to deliver addresses to the summit.

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