December 1, 2022

ISLAMABAD: Taking an exception to the US advice to Pakistan for restructuring of Chinese loans, China has asked the US to distance itself from Pakistan-China cooperation and rather focus on doing productive things for Pakistan.

China’s Ambassador to Pakistan Nong Rong’s statement came in the backdrop of US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s remarks who had advised his Pakistani counterpart Bilawal Bhutto Zardari in a meeting in Washington last month to seek debt relief and restructuring from China in the wake of devastating floods.

Issuing a video statement on his country’s National Day, Nong Rong reminded the United States, without taking its name, that “instead of finger-pointing against China-Pakistan cooperation, some country better do real and beneficial things for the people of Pakistan.”

The Chinese envoy reminded China has so far extended over $90 million in assistance to Pakistan after the devastating floods triggered by heavy monsoon rains. He reaffirmed his government’s continued support to Islamabad to help the flood-affected people.

Nong Rong, who personally took pains to provide assistance to the flood victims, said that China is the most reliable iron brother of Pakistan. Since the devastating floods occurred in Pakistan, among all countries, China has announced the biggest amount of assistance to Pakistan.

The Chinese ambassador said that the total amount of assistance has exceeded RMB 644 million (around $90 million), adding that the assistance comes from the Chinese government, the Communist Party of China (CPC), the Chinese army, the Red Cross Society of China and sister provinces and cities, Chinese enterprises and individuals.

Earlier, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin, while responding to the debt relief appeal by the US Secretary of State, said that the Chinese government has provided RMB 400 million worth of humanitarian assistance and China’s civil society has also lent a helping hand.

The spokesman noted that Pakistan and China have had fruitful economic and financial cooperation and that the Pakistani people know it best. “Instead of passing unwarranted criticism against Islamabad-Beijing cooperation, the US might as well do something real and beneficial for the people of Pakistan,” he maintained. Interestingly, a day earlier, Washington signed an agreement to suspend service payments on $132 million of Islamabad’s debt as the country faces an economic crisis exacerbated by the devastating floods.

The Chinese mission here in the federal capital opted not to host a traditional reception on the occasion of its National Day due to Covid-19 situation for the third consecutive year.

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