BEIJING, Dec. 17 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao will start an official visit to Pakistan Friday to strengthen bilateral ties.
China and Pakistan are neighbors with a traditional friendship and enjoy well-established geographical and cultural ties.
Since the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries in May 1951, China and Pakistan have developed an all-weather friendship and overall cooperation.
Recent years have witnessed a frequent exchange of visits between the Chinese and Pakistani leaders and further promoted mutual benefit cooperation in all fields of the two countries.
The following is a brief introduction to the landmark events in the China-Pakistan relationship over recent years:
In November 2003, Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf visited China. During the visit, leaders of both sides signed the China-Pakistan Joint Declaration on Directions of Bilateral Cooperation, which set directions and goals to consolidate mutual benefit cooperation in all fields.
In April 2005, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao visited Pakistan. The two sides inked the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Good Neighborly Relations and declared they would establish closer bilateral strategic and cooperative partnership. Meanwhile, Wen and his Pakistani counterpart Shaukat Aziz jointly announced they would start the negotiation on a free trade area between China and Pakistan.
In February 2006, Musharraf paid a visit to China, during which the two sides signed a series of framework agreements to expand and deepen bilateral economic and trade cooperation.
In November 2006, Chinese President Hu Jintao paid an official visit to Pakistan, the first time a Chinese president visited there in the past 10 years. During the visit, China and Pakistan inked a raft of cooperation agreements such as the China and Pakistan Free Trade Agreement, among others.
In October 2008, Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari visited China. During his visit, both sides signed a series of bilateral cooperation documents, covering economy, technology, trade, agriculture, communications, broadcasting and others.
In February 2009, Zardari made a visit to China's Hubei Province and Shanghai City, during which China and Pakistan inked the Agreement on Trade in Services for the China-Pakistan free trade area.
In October 2009, Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani attended the eighth prime ministers' meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) member states as the representative of an observer state.
In July 2010, Pakistani President Zardari visited China and witnessed the signing of six deals with China which cover the areas of agriculture, healthcare, justice, media, economy and technology.
In July and August 2010, the worst floods in Pakistan's history hit the country, causing huge losses in life and property. The Chinese government immediately offered material aid to Pakistan, dispatched a medical rescue team and provided funds for reconstruction. The total assistance China has pledged to Pakistan reached 250 million U.S. dollars.
In November 2010, Zardari arrived in Guangzhou to attend the opening ceremony of the 16th Asian Games.