China would like to involve other countries in CPEC after consulting Pakistan: Beijing

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China on Friday said third parties will be included in the multi-billion dollar China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project through consensus after consultation with Pakistan.

“China would like to discuss the possibility of introducing a third party on the basis of consensus with the Pakistani side through consultation,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said during a daily press briefing.

The spokesperson said, “The CPEC, as an important component of China’s Belt and Road initiative, is an open initiative.”

Responding to a question whether China welcomes India joining CPEC, Chunying said, “I wonder whether the Indian side takes this offer made by the Pakistani general as a goodwill gesture.”

“For us, we regard the CPEC as a framework for cooperation built by the two sides with a focus on the long-term development of bilateral cooperation in various fields. We hope that the CPEC will not only promote the economic and social development of China and Pakistan, but also contribute to regional connectivity, peace, stability and prosperity,” she said.

Earlier this week, Lt Gen Aamir Riaz, commander, Southern Command, invited to India to join the multi-billion dollar project.

Amid escalating tension between the two nuclear-tipped states, Commander Southern Command Lt General Amir Riaz on Tuesday invited India to join the China Pakistan Economic Corridor and ‘share the fruits of future development by shelving the anti-Pakistan activities and subversion’. He said Pakistan and its neighbouring countries could benefit from CPEC projects while the people can enjoy peace and stability by cooperating with the FC.