China-Tajikistan relations to make further strides
At the invitation of Tajik President Emomali Rahmon, Chinese President Xi Jinping will pay a state visit to Tajikistan in mid-June and attend the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA).
The visit, Xi’s second state visit to Tajikistan, is bound to become a new milestone in the development of China-Tajikistan relations and open new prospects for CICA.
The head-of-state diplomacy between the Chinese President and his Tajik counterpart has continued to guide China-Tajikistan relations to grow at a fast pace.
The development of China-Tajikistan relations embarked on a fast lane after President Xi’s first state visit to Tajikistan in 2014. In 2017, the relationship between the two countries was upgraded to a comprehensive strategic partnership.
The two heads of state have established a close working relationship and deep personal friendship, made top-level design and strategic deployment of bilateral relations and all-round cooperation, and further aligned the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) with Tajikistan’s national development strategy for the period up to 2030, taking bilateral relations into the best time in the history.
The construction of the BRI has advanced China-Tajikistan cooperation. Tajikistan took the lead in supporting the BRI upon its proposal, and was the first country to sign a cooperation agreement with China on joint construction of the Belt and Road.
China and Tajikistan have taken Belt and Road cooperation as the main axis, and advanced their cooperation in economic and trade, investment, energy and chemical industry, transportation and communication, mining and metallurgy, infrastructure, agriculture and agricultural products processing.
At present, more than 300 Chinese enterprises have invested in Tajikistan, implementing a large number of high-quality projects to accelerate development and benefit the people’s livelihood.
The Chinese investments helped Tajikistan build its own cement, chemical engineering, textile, electricity and transportation industries, and strongly supported Tajikistan’s development plans to achieve energy independence, improve transportation, realize food security and promote industrialization.
The concept of “a community with a shared future for mankind” has drawn China and Tajikistan closer.
The Tajik side highly agrees with President Xi’s idea of building a community with a shared future for mankind, and China firmly supports President Rahmon’s internal and external policies for the development of the country and the welfare of the people.
The two countries have no historical disputes or conflict at present. They support each other’s core interests, and coordinate and cooperate on the international stage.
The people-to-people bond between the two countries has been continuously consolidated, and the friendship from generation to generation has been deeply rooted in the hearts of two peoples.
The China-Tajikistan relations have a solid foundation to move onto a new level. President Xi’s upcoming visit will inject new impetus into the comprehensive cooperation between the two countries and guide bilateral relations to a higher level.
China has made extraordinary contribution to advancing CICA. Since the establishment of the mechanism 27 years ago, CICA has played a unique role in promoting peace and stability in Asia and regional exchanges and cooperation.
China has always played an important role in the development of CICA. It served as the chairman of CICA between 2014 and 2018, successfully hosting important events such as the Shanghai Summit and the CICA Foreign Ministers’ Meeting.
China’s proposal of a common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security strategy for Asia has been highly praised and widely recognized by all parties concerned.
China also initiated the CICA Non-governmental Forum, the CICA Business Council, and the CICA Youth Council, and organized a number of training and expert forums, which greatly enhanced CICA’s capability to promote dialogue and expanded the mechanism’s global influence. As the former CICA chair and a friendly neighbor of Tajikistan, China actively supports the Tajik side to run this conference well.
Currently, Asian development faces complicated and severe challenges. Under this circumstance, Xi’s attendance at the conference, a platform where leaders of participating countries and heads of international organizations discuss plans for Asia’s development, is an embodiment of China’s commitment to Asia and the whole world.
China will work with Asian countries, including Tajikistan, to further expand the influence of CICA, enhance the overall cooperation level of the mechanism, and advance the construction of a safe governance model with Asian characteristics. By doing so, Asia, which is gaining increasing global attention, will embrace a bright future with greater peace and prosperity.
(Liu Bin is the Chinese Ambassador to Tajikistan.)