The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Consortium of Universities here on Monday vowed to enhance cooperation in the fields of business studies, science and technology for the benefit of the societies of the two countries.
The understanding was reached among government officials, universities' heads, professors, researchers and students from the two sides on the 3rd annual conference of the CPEC Consortium of Universities in Islamabad which was held to review progress and realign efforts in the field of exchanges and researches.
On the occasion, Vice President of the China Association of Higher Education, Guan Peijun said the CPEC Consortium of Universities is playing an active role as China-Pakistan cooperation in higher education has been highly efficient, practical, and offering deep researches for CPEC.
"Universities of the two countries have jointly carried out work of scientific research, teacher exchanges and training, and have achieved fruitful results," said Guan, urging the universities of the two countries to jointly carry out scientific researches and achieve scientific breakthroughs for the development of the two societies.
The CPEC Consortium of Universities was founded in 2017 under the auspices of the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan and the China Association of Higher Education. Its main aim was to promote business-to-business linkages between China and Pakistan, but later on its scope was expanded to other subjects and the number of member universities also increased from 19 to 58 within a period of two years.
Addressing the conference, Pakistan's Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar said that diagnostics study through concrete research is required for evaluating the different potential sectors to harmonize bilateral socio-economic development.
"We have broadened the cooperation through CPEC, in areas of socio-economic development, agriculture, industries, infrastructure, energy and people-to-people contacts through the universities for enhancing the multilateral relations between the two countries and to shape future economic growth," said the minister.
Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing told the audience that the universities consortium on CPEC would play a vital role in the completion of mega projects. Yao added that the Chinese government has sponsored 100 modern classrooms, 10 agriculture research centers in Pakistani institutions and increased the number of scholarships for Pakistani students.
Yao highlighted that the next stage of CPEC would be more people-oriented where students, academia, universities, institutions would be the main players in the China-Pakistan cooperation, adding that the next stage of CPEC would be technology-based and universities can provide research-based solutions for the progress, which can be beneficial for societies of the two countries.
The conference was followed by the inauguration of a two-day Pakistan-China Higher Education Expo and a Science, Art and Technology Exhibition in conjunction with Islamabad Art Festival, which includes cultural activities covering all possible elements of visual and performing art.