China Is Next on Khan's List as Pakistan Looks for Bailout Money

"The people of Pakistan have always looked upon China very positively as a friend", he observed.

Khan will meet Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on Saturday, when the two countries are expected to sign a series of agreements.

Pakistan has said the project isn't a major contributor to Pakistan's debt or a cause of the "financial difficulties it faces now faces", Lu said, adding that discussions will focus on "how to better drive forward with the building of the project".

But while neither leader mentioned economic aid in front of reporters, China's top diplomat guaranteed support from Beijing in a separate meeting with his Pakistani counterpart.

The Prime Minister said CPEC was going in stages including roads, development of Gwadar, which was the second deepest port after Singapore, and some power projects that became part of CPEC.

India has consistently opposed the 1963 "China-Pakistan Boundary Agreement" that recognises PoK as under "actual Pakistani control" without prejudicing a final dispute resolution with India, and India has protested the Karakoram Highway on which traffic has been plying regularly, as well as subsequent infrastructure projects built by China in the disputed area.

China's stand he said is that the "cooperation between China and Pakistan has nothing to do with the territorial dispute and will not affect China's principled position on Kashmir", he said.

The CPEC is a crucial project under Chinese President Xi Jinping's One Belt One Road initiative or new Silk Road project, India has not yet agreed to join Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), citing the project does not respect other countries' territorial integrity and has put neighbouring countries under massive debt.

"We have very special relations with China".

The Pakistan prime minister's office said later that Xi had accepted an invitation to visit to the country.

His visit here was regarded as significant as it is taking place amid critical remarks made by some ministers in Khan's Cabinet on the CPEC which had caused consternation among Chinese leaders considering the "all-weather" relations.

He said that the government is also making all-out efforts for poverty alleviation.

The two sides underscored the importance of the Pak-China all-weather strategic cooperative partnership for a shared future.

Both sides also held a delegation-level meeting.

Earlier, President Xi warmly welcomed Prime Minister Khan and his delegation upon their arrival at the Great Hall of the People.

The India-occupied Jammu & Kashmir remains the most militarized zone in the world, where the occupation forces are killing and maiming people on a daily basis.

"Khan has posited that Chinese and Saudi financial assistance will reduce the amount Pakistan needs to borrow from the International Monetary Fund, mitigating Pakistan's susceptibility to the U.S. demands that its CPEC debt be transparent". The two ministers discussed further building the bilateral relationship on the 10-point agenda covering multifaceted practical cooperation.

  • Eleanor Harrison