Pakistan aims to double trade with China in 'shortest possible time'

Islamabad, Jan 9 (ANI): Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has underlined the need for doubling trade with China from current seven billion dollars to 15 billion dollars in the shortest possible time.

Talking to a visiting 100-member Chinese youth delegation, Gilani said 36 projects had been identified for the next Pakistan-China Five Year Development Program (2012-2016).

"These include major projects in education, health, energy, Information and Communications Technologies (ICT), transport, agriculture, and water conservancy," Xinhua quoted the prime minister, as saying.

He said Pakistan had also set priorities for China's participation in the reconstruction effort in the flood affected areas, agriculture, highway networks, energy and finance and banking.

"We will set up a new Energy Cooperation Mechanism which will promote cooperation in conventional, renewable and civil nuclear energy," he added.

Gilani said the year 2011 was a special year for both nations, as he and Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao in his December visit designated it as the Pakistan-China Friendship Year to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the smooth, successful and ever-blooming diplomatic relations between the two countries.

The youth would be the focus of the Friendship Year, said Gilani, adding that special attention was being paid to a number of youth-related matters, including contacts between universities, think tanks, mass media, film and television.

"The youth of the two countries has a special responsibility to advocate the values of tolerance and nurture a culture of harmony within societies and amongst members of the international community," he stated.

Gilani also stated that both Pakistan and China were committed to fighting the forces of terrorism, extremism and separatism.

"We are grateful to China for giving moral and practical support to Pakistan in the fight against terrorism," he added. (ANI)

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