Call to setup Pak-China cul­tural street

The Pak Banker - - NATIONAL -

"Pak-China cul­tural street should be es­tab­lished in dif­fer­ent cities of Pak­istan to pro­mote cul­tural har­mony be­tween China and Pak­istan". The idea was floated by Pres­i­dent Pak-China Joint Cham­ber of Com­merce and Idus­try, Shah Faisal Afridi in a press state­ment is­sued Thurs­day. He said that the lack of cul­tural con­tacts be­tween the two coun­tries was one of the key chal­lenges for a durable eco­nomic re­la­tion­ship be­tween Pak­istan and China.

Faisal Afridi was of the view that at a time when Pak­istan is en­ter­ing into ma­jor eco­nomic re­la­tions with for­eign coun­tries in the re­gion as well as glob­ally, it is im­per­a­tive to pay at­ten­tion to the cul­tural di­men­sions of in­ter­na­tional re­la­tions by ex­tend­ing the scope of pub­lic diplo­macy. He said that the in­ter­ac­tions be­tween cit­i­zens of neigh­bor­ing coun- tries, if based on an in­formed un­der­stand­ing of di­verse cul­tural prac­tices and aes­thetic tra­di­tions, can en­gen­der a process of ac­cul­tur­a­tion, which can help evolve transna­tional iden­ti­ties based on geo-cul­tural her­itage of the re­gion.

In view of the shared cul­tural his­to­ries of China and Pak­istan, Faisal Afridi sug­gested to es­tab­lish Pak-China Cul­tural streets em­brac­ing ev­ery­thing within the cul­tural di­men­sion of China. He ob­served that the Cul­tural Street will also serve as a fas­ci­nat­ing en­ter­tain­ment place for cit­i­zens of Pak­istan. Faisal Afridi said that the Cul­tural street can in­clude Chi­nese cui­sine, Chi­nese cal­lig­ra­phy, Chi­nese Lit­er­a­ture, kungfu and mar­tial arts, Chi­nese movies and theatre, Chi­nese dresses, more­over Tra­di­tional Chi­nese fes­ti­val such as Spring fes­ti­vals, Mid-Au­tumn Day, etc. can also be cel­e­brated in those streets of Pak­istan, along with Pak­istani lo­cal fes­ti­vals, such as Shin­door Mela, Mela Chi­raghan, and Jashn-e-Ba­haraan.

Faisal Afridi fur­ther ex­pli­cated that the cul­tural links should ex­tend be­yond the tra­di­tional modes of in­ter-state con­tacts, it may in­clude stu­dent and fac­ulty ex­change pro­grams be­tween uni­ver­si­ties, aca­demic con­fer­ences and pro­fes­sional as­so­ci­a­tions of Chi­nese and Pak­istani ex­perts, and civil so­ci­ety col­lab­o­ra­tions. He as­serted that the in­ter­ac­tions be­tween Pak­istani and Chi­nese me­dia should also be en­cour­aged along with joint ven­tures in cre­ative arts like cin­ema, theatre and mu­sic, led by in­ter-gov­ern­men­tal col­lab­o­ra­tions. Faisal Afridi men­tioned that Pak­istan has the po­ten­tial to be­come the safest place of in­vest­ment en­joy­ing col­lab­o­ra­tion of China in all fields of trade and in­dus­try. He said that no re­la­tion­ship be­tween two sov­er­eign states is as unique and durable as that be­tween Pak­istan and China. Ac­cord­ing to Faisal Afridi, a sus­tained re­la­tion­ship be­tween Pak­istan and China re­quires a mu­tual un­der­stand­ing of cul­tures, tra­di­tions and lan­guage, which can take place only through a ro­bust peo­ple-to-peo­ple contact. "A holis­tic state pol­icy to­wards cul­ture which could guide the na­tional cul­tural de­vel­op­ment as well as fill in the ranks for the cul­tural diplo­macy through for­eign cul­tural re­la­tions is yet to take shape, added Afridi. It is no­table that mere me­dia man­age­ment will not soften up Pak­istan's im­age, as the world is not only watch­ing our news footage, but also screen­ing our cre­ative en­deav­ors.

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