Pakistani Minister for Planning and Development Professor Ahsan Iqbal said on Friday afternoon that the government was promoting China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Project (CPEC) to attain sustainable economic growth and social prosperity as envisaged by Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif in the country.
Addressing a seminar on CPEC, organized by the Bahria University Islamabad, the minister stressed that CPEC was a mega-development project, which included developmental projects related to basic infrastructure, energy generation, Gwadar Port development and industrial cooperation. By the end of 2022, the CPEC has directly created 236,000 jobs, of which the number of Pakistani employees reached 155,000.
The CPEC has made significant progress due to the vision of the leadership of the Chinese President Xi Jinping, he said adding that Gwadar, energy, infrastructure and industrial development projects were agreed upon during the visit of the Chinese President, he concluded.
“Eleven working groups were established in the context of CPEC projects, adding that there were key achievements in the construction and development of Gwadar port, adding that the port was fully functional, Gwadar airport, hospital, sea water potable plant and other projects have also been built.”
The minister remarked that the projects which were completed under CPEC were contributing in economic development and employment creation and played a key role in improving the lives of the people. He said that the One Belt One Road initiative promoted economic and maritime cooperation in the world.
“Pakistan had made a revolution in industrial development in the 60s, but later geographical and social inequality hindered the phase of development. He said that the competition in innovation, research and creativity was vital for sustainable economic growth and development,” Ahsan Iqbal indicated.
Despite facing a series of challenges, the CPEC has formed a 1+4 cooperation layout focusing on port transportation infrastructure and energy industry in Pakistan. Ahsan Iqbal spoke highly of the valuable partnership between Pakistan and China that has enabled the successful implementation of the CPEC project and stressed the importance of continued cooperation to maintain the momentum.