A three-member delegation led by the Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan, Nong Rong, called on the Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Climate Change, Malik Amin Aslam, on Monday.
Various matters of bilateral interest, including environmental sustainability, climate resilience, and renewable energy, were discussed in the meeting, according to a press statement issued on Monday.
“We have discussed in detail various matters for enhanced bilateral cooperation and opportunities pertaining to the fields of post-COVID-19 green economic recovery in Pakistan by enhancing investment in nature-based solutions and green job creations, environmental sustainability, climate resilience, forest management, air pollution, water conservation, and disaster risk reduction,” SAPM Aslam said.
Ambassador Nong Rong said that his government is also committed to extending support to the green vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan and his remarkable green initiatives, including the Green Stimulus, a post-COVID-19 green recovery initiative for restoring people’s lives and livelihood affected by the pandemic.
The ambassador told PM’s aide Aslam that it is heartening that Prime Minister Imran Khan’s vision for a green Pakistan is perfectly aligned to the Chinese President Xi Jinping’s vision for green China. “We see a huge scope and opportunities of jointly working to promote the common green-vision for enhanced environmental sustainability and climate resilience against various adverse impacts of climate change on water, energy, food, health and education sectors,” the ambassador said.
China-Pakistan Green Economic Corridor
Both sides also agreed to make China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) a model green belt and road initiative by calling it China-Pakistan Green Economic Corridor, so that environment is taken care of while implementing the game-changing project of regional connectivity and economic development.
SAPM Aslam informed the ambassador that an ambitious Protected Areas Initiative, approved by the Prime Minister, has been already launched under the umbrella program ‘Clean Green Pakistan’.
This program aims to expand the country’s protected areas cover from 13 percent to more than 15 percent by 2023 and create 5,000 green jobs across the country that are viewed as crucial in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic while at the same time safeguarding the country’s natural resources.
The Chinese envoy was informed that the Ministry for Climate Change has kicked-off several flagship programs and projects. These include the world’s largest afforestation program of 10 Billion Tree Tsunami Program, Clean Green Pakistan Program, Protected Areas Initiative, Plastic-Free Pakistan Initiative, and Recharge Pakistan Initiative.
These programs are launched as a part of the country’s efforts to achieve environmental sustainability and climate resilience through conservation and protection of the environment, forests, and wildlife. These programs are also aimed at increasing community and youth engagements as a top priority, the envoy was informed.
The Chinese envoy appreciated the present government’s initiatives towards enhancing Pakistan’s resilience against the fall-outs of climate change. He appreciated these projects as effective solutions to the negative impacts of environmental degradation on agriculture, food security, education, and livelihoods of the vulnerable communities.
The ambassador also said that the Chinese government would deploy its financial, technological, and knowledge resources to support Pakistan through its experiences in overall COVID-19 crisis management and post-COVID-19 green recovery. The SAPM thanked the Chinese government for its support to the green and clean initiatives in Pakistan.