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Deepening of Pakistan-China ties under CPEC

Deepening of Pakistan-China ties under CPEC

Viewing promotion and advancement of China, Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the Government of Pakistan must take exemplary efforts under the development in Pakistan through China’s top quality Road and Belt initiatives, said some leading experts while talking to the Pakistan and Gulf Economist.

They said that Pakistan can also utilize and implement the idea in its own requirement; Pakistan needs modernization in order to carry on with the emerging world or else be obsolete. There is a need to connect industry and institute in order to resolve the problems, as our country needs to institutionalize the issues to CPEC.

CPEC: Industrial Cooperation/Special Economic Zones (SEZs)
Under Construction Projects
Project Name Progress Update
1. Rashakai Special Economic Zone Concession Agreement between Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Economic Zone Development and Management Company (KPEZDMC) and China Road & Bridge Corporation (CRBC) was signed in April 2019. The development agreement was signed on 14 Sep 2020 with a development cost of $128 million. Groundbreaking / launching of RSEZ was held on 28th May 2021.
2. Dhabeji Special Economic Zone The land has been allocated. The bidding for the development of SEZ is in process. The preferred bidder will be announced soon. Utilities are being provided as per timelines.
3. Allama Iqbal Industrial City Groundbreaking of AIIC was held on 3rd January 2020 which was attended by the Prime Minister of Pakistan. The land has been acquired for AIIC and development work is in progress since November 2019. Numerous national and international enterprises have been allotted plots in the SEZ. Few companies have already started construction work.
4. Bostan Special Economic Zone The SEZ Approval Committee officially approved the Bostan SEZ on 4th March 2020 in the 5th Board of Approval meeting and awarded SEZ status on 5th May, 2020. Development work on phase-I (200 acres) has been completed. Phase-1 of Bostan SEZ has been launched for allotment of industrial plots.
In-Pipeline Projects
5. ICT Model Industrial Zone, 6.Industrial Park on Pakistan Steel Mill Land,7.Mirpur Industrial Zone,8.Mohmand Marble City,9.Moqpondass Special Economic Zone

According to the Economic Survey of Pakistan, CPEC is a flagship and most actively implemented project of the Belt & Road Initiative (BRI) where Pakistan and China have fruitfully introduced 56 projects on the ground. Out of these projects, statistics identified that 26 projects worth about US$17 billion have been completed so far and 30 projects worth US$8.5 billion are under construction.

Moreover, 36 projects having an estimated cost of US$28.4 billion are also under dissimilar stages of negotiations for inclusion in the CPEC framework. This tremendous progress is a sign of great attempts and achievement of both the countries and realization of the dream of connectivity and inclusive economic growth.

Pakistan considers CPEC as a long-term development project as it has the potential to serve as a corridor with multiple doors connecting China with Central Asia, Middle East, Africa and Europe. Pakistan is also enlarging the scope of CPEC so that it becomes a “Gateway of Prosperity” for both states and the region at large.

Moreover in a large number, the Chinese and Pakistani workforce is employed to ensure timely completion of the Infrastructure projects and introduce new projects like Sukkur-Hyderabad Motorway (M-6), Peshawar-D.I. Khan Motorway (M-14), KKH Alternative Route (Gilgit-Shandor-Chitral), Swat Expressway (Phase-II), Dir Expressway, Karachi Circular Railways.

Sources recorded that Chinese government proclaimed that the landmark project of China, CPEC has attained fruitful consequences, bringing in US$ 25.4 billion in investment and assisted Pakistan to mitigate its energy and communication problems by adding 6040 megawatts of electricity and 886 kilometers of core national transmission network and 510 kilometers of highways.

Experts also identified that China and Pakistan will jointly advance CPEC with greater efficiency making it an exemplar of high-quality Belt and Road cooperation. Furthermore under the corridor, the two sides would make full use of the Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) of the CPEC to ensure the speedy completion of projects. Under the promotion of CPEC, they also recorded that Pakistan’s energy shortage had been greatly addressed, transport infrastructure has been enhanced, and local people have gained a large number of career opportunities. China would always put Pakistan as its priority for cooperation and work in joint hands to address various risks and problems at the regional and international levels, deepen the China-Pakistan all-weather strategic cooperative partnership, and build a closer China-Pakistan community with a shared future in the new era. No doubt, CPEC is an opportunity that was harnessed as a consequence of Pakistan’s geo-strategic location. Because of same reason, it has vital significance in China’s One Belt One Road Initiative because it is the enriched and shortest route of east west connectivity offering connectivity to not only region but civilization.

Furthermore, both countries launched a new initiative to increase science and technology cooperation and to seize the opportunities that would benefit both states. More recently, the Chinese Zhongguancun Belt and Road Industrial Promotion Association (ZBRA) and Pakistan’s Special Technology Zones Authority (STZA) have jointly launched the China-Pakistan Science and Technology Cooperation Centre in Beijing.

Experts also indentified in their statistics that greater than 3,000 Chinese technology companies virtually attended the inauguration event held at Pakistan Embassy in Beijing. It is said that technology sector emerged as a cornerstone of China-Pakistan cooperation during the present trip of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to China.

Both countries have also formed joint working groups on science and technology (S&T) and Information Technology (IT) under the multi-billion-dollar CPEC. On the other hand the government of Pakistan invited Turkiye to join CPEC to bring about regional prosperity, alleviate poverty and empower people by better education and health facilities. Experts said that this would be a wonderful joint cooperation.

Statistics of Observatory of Economic Complexity showed that trade between Pakistan and Turkey increased two-fold last year, from $599.6 million to $1.1 billion during 2021. It has since maintained a steady rise. Earlier in August, Ankara and Islamabad signed the Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA), to boost trade and economic ties between the two countries.

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