CPEC, a project of region’s strong integration to attain multiple benefits

By: Azfar Karim      Published: 08:13 PM, 26 Jun, 2021
CPEC, a project of region’s strong integration to attain multiple benefits

The China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is not simply and development project among two nations but on its completion, it is going to give the entire region a strong integration to rack up multiple benefits.

Pakistan and China enjoy close and friendly relations as Pakistan was the first country to recognize China after its independence. The strategic cooperation between Pakistan and China has grown over the past several decades. Pakistan recognized the People's Republic of China in 1950 and started diplomatic relations on 21st May 1951. For a decade these two countries have supported each other politically, economically and militarily.

Both Pakistan and China term each other as “Iron brothers”, and time tested friends. This is the reason that Pakistan still has stable and positive objectives in its foreign policy.

Pakistan and China have not only always respected each other’s sovereignty but also stood at the time.

Both the countries and their leadership had also made efforts to further strengthening the existing bilateral relationship between them.

The year 2015 was important in the history of relations between two friendly countries because during this year the materialization of ‘China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) began and also signed an agreement by the then leadership of the two countries in this regard. CPEC was basically a strategic project in order to enhance the economic connectivity between China and Pakistan, and it was a clutch of projects with an estimate of US Dollars 62 billion.

CPEC aims to build a network of roads, railway lines and power projects in Pakistan which will automatically strengthen economic ties between China and Pakistan. It can be said that the factor which allowed Pakistan to have its foreign policy in favour of China was the foundation of CPEC and that still today in this region China is the only country for which Pakistan kept friendly foreign policy. There is a great importance of CPEC for Pakistan, first and foremost is the economic. After 1970’s Pakistan did not have any foreign direct investments, the Pakistani economy was dependent on international financial institutions.

The massive investment of 62 billion dollars under the CPEC project resulted in the boost of economic activities in the country. In contemporary time, the coronavirus pandemic affected the global economy badly. Despite these pandemic issues, three main projects of CPEC were announced in 2020. First is the $2.4 billion Kohala hydropower project of 1,124 megawatts. Second is the $1.5 billion Azad Pattan 700 megawatts hydropower project and third is the $6.8 billion for the up-gradation of railways from Karachi to Peshawar. Secondly, Pakistan was facing acute energy shortages before the CPEC project, but the early harvest projects were included in CPEC to deal with this dilemma in the first stage. Next is agricultural productivity, Agriculture is the backbone of

Pakistan economy is based on our agriculture. China has stated that in the second Phase of CPEC they are going to introduce digitalization and the modern reforms in the field of agriculture which will not only minimize the losses we are facing right now but they will also help us in the maximization of productivity of agriculture. The CPEC project will also help Pakistan to deal with the Indian aggression especially with respect to Kashmir, this is the reason that India is so frustrated with the development of CPEC. CPEC has also somehow succeeded in eradicating unemployment from Pakistan because many Pakistani workers are working under the CPEC projects. CPEC is not only beneficial for Pakistan but also for China because it will allow China to have better trade with many countries which are directly or directly linked with the Indian ocean. Not only this, these CPEC projects will bring a noticeable change in the western areas of China which are highly undeveloped.

CPEC has achieved so much and both China and Pakistan have worked with great enthusiasm to make it a success story in such a short time. Apart from CPEC whether it’s coronavirus pandemic, Kashmir issues, Pulwama crisis or any difficult moments faced by Pakistan it’s China who has always stood firm like a rock with our country and has always prioritized Pakistan. In 2000 Pakistan and China celebrated their 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations. In the coming years, their development goals will be intertwined, with billions in shared development which will further raise the position of Pakistan in international politics. Together both China and Pakistan are expected to grow, fueled by one another. China was always there for Pakistan in their severe economic crises and I am sure China always will be.

Categories : Opinion