Islamabad: All Pakistan-China Friendship Association (APCFA), in collaboration with the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Pakistan organized the Pakistan-China Friendship Festival to celebrate the 74th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China and the 10th anniversary of the launch of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
The event featured activities such as Chinese calligraphy classes, culinary training sessions, workshops on Chinese calligraphy, musical band performances, and various stalls showcasing traditional items from both countries to promote bilateral culture.
The guest of honor for the event was Zhang Heqing, who serves as the Cultural Counselor and Director of the China Cultural Center in Pakistan.
During his address at the event, he conveyed his sincere gratitude to APCFA for their diligent efforts in arranging this important gathering and for their active involvement in various cultural promotion activities that encourage youth in both Pakistan and China.
He added that China and Pakistan, as neighboring nations connected by rivers and mountains, had been steadfast partners since the establishment of diplomatic relations. Both the countries have weathered challenges and hard times.
They each have rich histories, with Pakistan tracing back 4600 years to the Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa civilizations.
China boasts an extensive history dating back to the Liangzhu civilizations. Another commonality between the two nations is their populations; China is recognized for having the world’s largest population, while Pakistan ranks among the world’s fifth largest in terms of population.
In alignment with the sentiments expressed by the other speakers, he echoed their acknowledgment of the pivotal role that youth have played and will continue to play in the development of both nations.
He expressed his hope that the youth would devote themselves to their studies and contribute significantly to the progress of Pakistan.
He also wished for them to become outstanding ambassadors of the friendship between China and Pakistan.
Over the past 74 years, China has undergone remarkable transformations under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC).
China has successfully eradicated absolute poverty, established the world’s largest education, social security, and healthcare systems, and achieved substantial economic growth and enduring social stability.
Forty-five years ago, China initiated the reform and opening-up policy, which has not only significantly transformed China but has also created vast opportunities for the global community.
Zhang Heqing said: “Today, we embark on a new journey with confidence to advance the nation’s great rejuvenation through modernization.”
Muhammad Ikhlaq Usmani, President APCFA, Romana Iftikhar, Patron APCFA, Syed Ali Nawaz Gilani APCFA Peshawar were among the other dignitaries present at the event.
Students from Super Nova School, West Minister School and academy, Islamabad Collage of Arts and Sciences and Iqra University enthusiastically participated in the event.
A Chinese teacher taught the audience a Chinese language class, allowing them to learn the fundamentals of Chinese languages by teaching them common words for friendship. Students actively participated in the Chinese culinary session, learning Jiaozi making techniques and then demonstrating what they had learned.
The Chinese Calligraphy workshop piqued the interest of various school students, who learned how to hold the calligraphy brush, basic strokes, and the fundamentals of calligraphy before displaying their newly acquired calligraphy skills on papers.
The festival’s ambiance was elevated with musical performances by a band and stalls showcasing diverse cultural artifacts from both China and Pakistan.
These elements contributed to the promotion of art and culture from both countries, aligning with the theme of celebrating the 74th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, the 10th anniversary of CPEC and BRI, and the continuous strengthening of the friendship and cultural bonds between these steadfast allies.