Chinese Vice-Premier Wang Yang will arrive in Pakistan on Sunday to take part in the country’s Independence Day celebrations on August 14, officials said on Saturday.
Wang will be accompanied by a high-level delegation for the two-day visit, which comes on the “directions of President Xi Jinping as a special gesture”, the Pakistan foreign office said. “His visit on this important milestone for Pakistan is a reflection of the all-weather strategic cooperative partnership between Pakistan and China,” it said.
From Pakistan, Wang would head to Nepal, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang announced in Beijing. Geng did not give the details of Wang’s Nepal visit.
The visit to Pakistan and Nepal by the top Chinese official comes as India and China have been locked in a military standoff for nearly two months at the strategic Doklam plateau in Bhutan.
The face-off began on June 16 after Chinese troops tried to build a road in the disputed area. India has protested the move, saying China was unilaterally changing the status quo at the trijunction with Bhutan.
As a member of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the Communist Party, Wang is among the top and most senior leaders in China. In Pakistan, he will be the “special guest” to mark the country’s 70th Independence Day, and later call on President Mamnoon Hussain. He will also call on Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, a statement from the foreign office said.
He will participate in an inauguration ceremony of projects related to the $50 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which passes through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
Some bilateral agreements are likely to be signed during his visit to Pakistan.
In March this year, a contingent of the guard of honour of the three services of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) took part in the Pakistan military parade held in Islamabad to mark Pakistan Day. PTI