islamabad

Pakistan and China have agreed to implement Economic Corridor Project on fast-track basis, while ensuring its equal benefits to whole of the country.

According to the official sources, a joint cooperation committee, constituted for its implementation will soon hold its fourth round of talks. Besides major cities and towns, even the country’s remote region will be its beneficiary. Most of its work will be completed within a period of five-year.

The sources said, China-Pak economic corridor project (CPEC) is a broad-based idea, which not only covers  road construction, but also projects relating to energy and infrastructure development. Under the CPEC, industrial parks and business hubs will be set up in all parts of the country. It is aimed at improving overall national economy and living standard of the people across the board.   

All the work on the economic corridor project is being done on speedy way. Leadership of both sides attached high importance to its early implementation, hoping that it will be another milestone in their decades’ old brotherly relationship.

Any controversy on the project might create hurdles in its smooth working, official sources said, adding all circles, provinces and political parties need to support it for achieving the desired results. There should be no confusion and misunderstanding to this effect.

The debate on the alignment of project will only add divergence between different regions and parties in Pakistan. It is not conducive to the unity and development of Pakistan. The debate should come to an end for the fundamental interest of Pakistan, said a Chinese official. He hoped that all circles in Pakistan will understand and support the construction of CPEC for the country’s largest interest.

According to the sources, the cooperation between the two countries is based on the consensus by two sides. The purpose of building CPEC is to bring benefits to all the people of the whole Pakistan, including Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Some projects in the two provinces are already under way.

For instance, in Balochistan, the building of flagship project of Gwadar port is under way, including the construction of eastbay expressway and International Airport. In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the KKH extension Phaseis being advanced.

Feasibility studies on upgrading of Main Line 1 and Havelian Dry Port project are under way. Both sides have successfully built Gomal Zam Dam, Khan Khawar Hydropower Station, Duber Khawar Hydropower Station. Tarbela Dam extension phase is now under construction and projects such as Suki-Kinari Hydropower Station and Keyal Khwar Hydropower Station are to be built. The projects under construction and to be built in KPK will yield the capacity of more than 9000MW, which will greatly ease the electricity shortage and bring tremendous benefits to the local people.

Due to the limited resources and feasibility of operation, projects of CPEC will be built step by step with clear focus and emphasis, combined with both long-term plan and early harvest projects.  Both sides have decided to start work on KKH Phase II, highway between Multan and Sukkur and some energy projects. The early harvests from these projects will help accumulate good experience and pave the way for future cooperation.  With the construction of CPEC, more projects will be built in every region of Pakistan.

Security issues WILL be taken into consideration during the construction of CPEC. The federal and local governments have been taken necessary steps to provide necessary security protection, which is the precondition of construction.

It may be mentioned here, that in May 2013, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang paid a visit to Pakistan and reached important consensus with Pakistan leaders on planning and constructing the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). During Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s visit to China in July, 2013, the construction of CPEC was reiterated.  CPEC starts from Kashgar, Xinjiang runs throughout the whole Pakistan, and finally reaches Gwadar Port in the south.