LAHORE: Vice Chancellor Punjab University Prof Dr Zaffar Mueen Nasar on Saturday said China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will benefit entire region besides positively influencing Pakistan socially, economically and politically to a great extent.

Talking to a group of students at PU CPEC centre he  said CPEC will accrue many economic benefits to China, Pakistan, Russia, Central Asia, and other South Asian countries in terms of trade, investment and people to people contact, it is also likely to create a regional environment whereby South Asian countries would be attracted to seek peace based on the incentives of CPEC related economic benefits by joining it.

“In this context, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India, in support of China, Russia, Central Asian Republics (CARs) and other South Asian countries, might get convinced for seeking peace in the region by resolving the disputes confronting them,” he added.

He further said our region has witnessed a lot of conflict and deprivation in the past. “Time has come to turn a new leaf in the history of the region by bringing peace and prosperity and addressing the challenges of poverty, unemployment and underdevelopment,” he added.

Throwing light on the declining of the export volume in Pakistan, he said the CPEC project would provide a network of roads and railways to link remote manufacturing facilities to the Karachi and Gwadar seaports. The improved connectivity will reduce the costs of transportation and curtail travel time.

“Furthermore not only will it enhance competitiveness of existing firms, it will also incentivize exports,”

adding he said moreover the project will also lead to the expansion of the export product set. For instance, Pakistan’s northern areas produce vegetables and fruits, such as apples, apricots and cherries.

But due to a lack of good connectivity, most of this produce cannot be exported. The CPEC will link the northern areas to airports in Peshawar, Rawalpindi, and Lahore. This will give a boost to the export of agricultural commodities,as most of these products are transported by air owing to their perishable nature” he elucidated.

He said similarly, CPEC will be addressing Pakistan’s energy crisis as projects worth $35 billion are

envisaged in Pakistan in the energy sector.

Prof Dr Zaffar, a leading economist of international fame, has said CPEC will enable Pakistan to benefit greatly from know-how, ingenuity, innovation and time-tested expertise of the Chinese industry.

"With the establishment of the zone in the remote areas, employment and uplift will come to the downtrodden and undeveloped areas of the country which will reduce poverty in these areas," he observed.

"Enhancement of geographical linkages having improved road, rail and air transportation systems with frequent and free exchange of growth and people to people contact; improving understanding of each other through academic and cultural linkages as well as cultural activities; high volume of trade and business is a win-win model," he noted.