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N-deal will be focus of Hu's first visit to Pakistan
Anil K Joseph in Beijing | November 12, 2006 19:19 IST
China and Pakistan are all set to finalise an agreement on nuclear energy cooperation during President Hu Jintao's upcoming visit to Islamabad.
Pakistan is seeking six nuclear reactors of 300 MW each to boost its power sector. China has already helped Pakistan build a nuclear reactor of 350 megawatts at Chashma and it was currently building one more at the same place with the same capacity.
Several agreements and MoUs are expected to be inked during the November 23-26 state visit to Pakistan, the first by a Chinese President in a decade, diplomatic sources said.
Drafts of these agreements and MoUs have been apparently finalised this week during the visit of a Pakistan delegation to Beijing.
China and Pakistan are expected to sign agreements in the field of free trade, civilian nuclear technology and other infrastructure projects.
Hu's visit figured prominently at the second round of China-Pakistan strategic dialogue on October 27 and both sides reached 'important results', Chinese Foreign Ministry sources said.
Assistant Foreign Minister Cui Tiankai exchanged views with Pakistani Foreign Secretary Riaz Mohammad Khan on China-Pakistan cooperation and on Hu's visit, the sources said.
Cui, who briefed reporters on Hu's visit to Pakistan this week, did not directly respond whether China and Pakistan will sign a nuclear energy agreement.
However, Cui said he believed there was considerable scope for cooperation between China and Pakistan in many sectors, including energy.
Hu's visit to Pakistan will further boost the 'all-weather relationship' Pakistan and China shared, Cui said, adding that the friendship between the two countries was 'strongly rooted in the hearts of both peoples'.
China hopes to promote political relations with Pakistan and expand bilateral cooperation in various fields through this visit, he said.