The governments of China and Pakistan agreed here Friday on a plan to create an economic corridor linking the western Chinese city of Kasghar with the Pakistani port of Gwadar.
Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is in Beijing this week for talks with China's premier, Li Keqiang, and president, Xi Jinping.
The pact mandates the appointment of a binational commission to oversee the project, which will involve the designation of special economic zones in China and construction of a railroad and fuel pipeline.
Kashgar lies in the Xinjiang region, which was rocked last week by clashes between Chinese authorities and the Uighurs, a Central Asian people of Muslim faith.
Friday marks the fourth anniversary of similar events that left 200 dead in Xinjiang.
Beijing blames "external and internal forces" for the disturbances and has pointed the finger at groups in Pakistan on several occasions.
For Pakistan, the economic corridor offers a chance to acquire badly needed infrastructure in the areas between its northeastern border and its Indian Ocean coastline.
Western China, meanwhile, stands to gain an outlet to the sea.
Other bilateral accords signed here Friday include one that calls for China's Huawei to install fiber-optic cable in Pakistan.
Pakistan-China relations are "sweeter than honey," Sharif said during his meeting with Prime Minister Li, adding that he was proud to have chosen Beijing for his first foreign trip after taking office last month. EFE