The cultural exchanges between China and Pakistan have undergone a long history. It started more than two thousand years ago. Shortly after the founding of New China in 1949, the two countries began their diplomatic ties and have ever since maintained close and friendly cooperative relations in various fields like politics, economy as well as culture. The governments of the two countries signed The Cultural Cooperation Agreement between Pakistan and China on March 25, 1965, when the first executive programme for the Agreement was also signed. The two countries resumed the signing and implementation of the two-year executive programme in 1979, and since 1997, the two-year executive programme has been ever changed into three-year programme. The latest one was signed in Beijing in 2003 which covers the years between 2004 to 2006.
China-Pak cultural exchanges and cooperation have made continuous headways ever since the diplomatic ties of the two countries. Important delegations to each other's country are as follows:
In May 1983, a Chinese Government Cultural Delegation, headed by Mr. Zhu Muzhi, ex-Minister for Culture of China, visited Pakistan; In November 1991, a Chinese Government Cultural Delegation, headed by Mr. Xu Wenbo, ex-Minister for Culture of China, visited Pakistan; In November 1981, a Pakistani Government Cultural Delegation, headed by Mr. Niaz Mohammud Arbab, visited China; In June 1982, a Pakistani Government Cultural Delegation, headed by Mr. Masood Nabi Nur, ex-Secretary Ministry of Culture of Pakistan, visited China; In September 1999, a Pakistani Government Cultural Delegation, headed by Mr. Shaheed Hussain, ex-Minister for Information and Culture of Pakistan, visited China, etc.
Apart from that, the two countries have also carried out a number of fruitful exchanges and cooperation in art, literature, education, information, sports, youth affairs, cultural relics, archives, publications, health and women affairs etc. In the past half a decade, Chinese art troupes visited Pakistan many times including folk song and dance troupe, traditional instrumental music troupe and acrobatic troupe etc. and exchanges also took place in the areas like painting, handicrafts as well as puppet show etc. The latest comes to be the 30-member Chinese Jiangxi Acrobatic Troupe that visited Pakistan in January 2004 and was welcomed much during their stay. In literature, quite a few writings from both sides have been translated into each other's language throughout the years. In TV and film, a special agreement was signed by the two governments in order to promote the cooperation in this field, and in mid 1980s several TV programs were jointly produced by two countries' TV channels including Affection on the Highway which captured the fondness from the people of both countries. China-Pak educational exchanges and cooperation have developed a lot too over the past years. Now China annually offers 65 person scholarships to Pakistan while Pakistan annually offers 6 scholarships to China. From the year 2003, Pakistan Higher Education Commission started a special project where qualified students would be selected to explore their doctor's degree in China on government-financed basis. So far 72 students have been sent under this project. Apart from the above, annually around 500 self-financed students in Pakistan now go to China for study of medicine, electronics and engineering technology etc., and the Chinese students who come to Pakistan for self-financed study are also in a big number every year.