Over 3,000 projects completed under BRI in past 10 years: Chairman CIDCA

Beijing: Chairman, China International Development Cooperation Agency (CIDCA), Luo Zhaohui has said that more than 3,000 projects have been completed under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in the past 10 years.

Over 180 countries and international organizations have supported the Initiative to date, he told media at the launching of the Urdu edition of a book comprised of stories about China’s foreign assistance.

The book, entitled “Rose Stories Along the Belt and Road”, contains around than 66 stories about the assistance China has provided to countries that have joined the Belt and Road Initiative, including Pakistan, and was first published in Chinese and English in September of last year. Luo Zhaohui said the book demonstrates the friendship between the Chinese people and people of other countries.

China does not attach any political strings to its foreign assistance, nor does it seek anything in return from the assistance, Luo said at the launching ceremony, adding that the assistance has been widely supported by countries which have received it. Pakistan Ambassador to China Moin ul Haque, who attended the launching ceremony of the book’s Urdu edition, said the book is “a practical implementation of the vision of building a community with a shared future for mankind.” The edition in Urdu, the official language of Pakistan, will help the people of Pakistan understand China’s development philosophy and how it has helped people around the world and in Pakistan improve their lives, Haque said. Ambassador Haque acknowledged China’s foreign aid assistance to his country and said that he looks forward to new opportunities for Pakistan and other countries under the framework.

He also noted China’s long-term assistance to his country. The vaccines China donated to Pakistan to help the latter’s response to COVID-19 have saved lives of millions of Pakistanis, he said. Ambassador Haque also mentioned that during his tenure as China’s ambassador to Pakistan during 2006-2010, Chairman Luo gave strong support to important projects, including the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) which laid an important foundation for bilateral cooperation. The flagship project of the BRI has brought great changes to Pakistan, which is reflected in the fields of economy, urban construction and energy. “In the future, we hope to carry out broader cooperation with China in the fields of economic development, education, health, climate change and so on,” he added.

A Pakistani entrepreneur, Ali Khar who is currently promoting cooperation in artificial intelligence in China and also the Urdu translator of the book, also attended the event. Speaking of the original intention of translating this book, he said that because many people in Pakistan speak Urdu, although China has actually promoted many aid projects in Pakistan, many stories are actually not known to ordinary people. Therefore, we can at least do some translation and recommendation work to promote the development of bilateral relations, especially to enhance the connection between the people of the two countries.

He hoped to learn from the successful experience and models of China’s development and promote more cooperation through digital technology under the cooperation framework of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.