Geo-strategic and geo-economical alliances between nations have been facilitated by the emergence of regional and global strategic movements around the world in the twenty-first century. CPEC, or the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, is among the most successful examples of such alliances. The CPEC’s entire launch period ranges from 2014 to 2030. The projects under CPEC are being implemented in three stages. According to estimates, the short-, mid-, and long-term projects will be finished in 2017, 2025, and 2030, respectively. These projects are expected to cost $46 billion to build. It is a system of roads, trains, pipelines, transport, gas, oil, and energy. The CPEC would benefit the agriculture industry both directly and indirectly by advancing both developing and advanced nations.
Agriculture and infrastructure connection
Low-income economies have relied heavily on agriculture. In rural regions, it typically serves as the main source of employment and revenue. Pakistan’s agriculture industry has consistently faced a decline during the past ten years. One of the main causes of this downturn may be the worst energy crisis but as CPEC involves a network of infrastructure, so there exists a strong connection between the sector’s development and agriculture. If we recall the history then we remember the tool of the Green revolution, which is a package consisting of development programs that support agriculture including infrastructure development because the development of irrigational infra-structure always brought revolutionary changes in agricultural output by enhancing the intensity of utilizing the land and through the provision of incentives to the farmers to use high yielding inputs.
Impacts on technology
History witnesses the fact that infrastructure development sparks a revolution in agricultural technology as infrastructure development reduces the cost of transportation and enhances the input purchasing power of farmers. It is also reported that improvement in road quality leads to an increase in the probability of farmers affording high-yielding input from 29 to 35 percent. It is also noticed that improved returns on investment may be realized through connecting farmers to the extension of services, communication infrastructure, the market, rural services, and rural roads as it will encourage farmers to embrace and invest in improved land technology.
Effect on trade
Trade is one of the tools of any nation that guarantees economic prosperity. It is estimated that a 10 percent decrease in transport costs leads to a 25 percent rise in international trade. Investment in transport infrastructure and communication results in the promotion of international trade as such investment reduces transport costs so, transport and trade-related infrastructure are very crucial for exports of agricultural products and the leading constraint behind weak linkage among the nations is the poor linkage of infrastructure and trade corridor that hinders trade and development that’s why infrastructure development are encouraged to foster agricultural trade and to develop market integration mechanism.
In order to build a linear agglomeration of people and interests that complements the pre-existing transport framework, corridors play a significant role in boosting agribusiness generally. High-income countries throughout the world are being pushed by economic globalization to establish fundamental policies for building trade corridors. Agro corridors are more beneficial for developing countries like Pakistan as they use them to enhance their agricultural industries. It is also identified that investment in infrastructure consisting of roads, irrigation and electricity with the help of different channels eventually enhances real income and reduces the level of poverty.
Framework showing the impact of infrastructure on agricultural growth and poverty reduction
Potential of CPEC
On the basis of agro-ecologies, the CPEC is divided into 10 sections, and developed to achieve,
- Food sovereignty
- Benefitting farmers and rural communities
- Smarter food production and yields
- Biodiversity conservation
- Sustainable soil health and cleaner water
- Ecological pest management and
- Resilient food system
Types of value-added agricultural commodities can be produced in different agro-climate zones of Pakistan
Effects of Infrastructure on agricultural output in developing countries
Past studies witness the Impact of infrastructure on the Agricultural output of developing nations.
It is concluded that Geo-strategic and geo-economical alliances between nations have been facilitated by the emergence of regional and global strategic movements around the world in the twenty-first century like (CPEC) so, in order to enjoy the fruits of CPEC development it is mandatory to link infrastructure, production growth, and poverty eradication as infrastructural development and agricultural output are strongly correlated and lack of infrastructure acts as a barrier to the expansion of agriculture. It is hoped that CPEC would significantly aid in improving the agriculture sector in Pakistan. It would shift the game in terms of boosting productivity growth and reducing poverty as it encourages and promotes agriculture trade. The agriculture industry’s expansion is hampered by inadequate infrastructure so, special efforts must be taken to grab the opportunity of promoting agriculture through CPEC, which translates into the economic prosperity of Pakistan.
The author is MD IRP/ Faculty Department of H&SS, Bahria University Karachi