BEIJING, Feb. 11 (Xinhua) -- Pakistani President Mamnoon Hussain will pay a state visit to China from Feb. 18 to 21 as the guest of Chinese President Xi Jinping, a Foreign Ministry spokesman announced on Tuesday.
It will be the first foreign visit for Hussain since he took office last year, and he will also be the first foreign head of state received by China since the country's Spring Festival holiday, said Hua Chunying, noting that China attaches great importance to his visit.
Speaking at a daily press briefing, Hua said Xi will hold a welcome ceremony for Hussain and hold talks with him. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and top legislator Zhang Dejiang will also meet with him.
The two sides will issue a joint statement on their decision to promote bilateral friendship as well as deepen pragmatic cooperation in all sectors, she said.
The spokeswoman commended the sound development of bilateral ties last year, recalling the phone conversation between the two heads of state, mutual visits of their prime ministers, the construction of the China-Pakistan economic corridor, fruitful economic and trade cooperation as well as close coordination in international and regional affairs.
"China is satisfied with the development of its relations with Pakistan and confident about the future for friendly cooperation," said Hua.
The development of friendship and cooperation with Pakistan is a high priority in China's diplomacy, she said, adding that China is ready to work with Pakistan to ensure the success of Hussain's visit, in a bid to push for new progress in bilateral relations.