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CPEC at a glance


CPEC created 192,000 jobs, 6,000MW of power supply, 809km of highway: PM Coordinator​

February 11, 2023

BEIJING: As a megaproject with a cumulative investment of $ 65 billion in 2022, the CPEC has created 192,000 jobs, 6,000MW of power supply, 809km of highway, and 886km of transmission line, which laid a solid foundation for Pakistan’s socio-economic development.

This was stated by Rana Ihsan Afzal khan, Coordinator to Prime Minster of Pakistan on Commerce and Industry, in an interview with China Economic Net (CEN).

Citing an example of a road project under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, Rana said, “it used to take almost 24 hours to travel from Islamabad to Gilgit Baltistan.

As soon as the CPEC came in and the road network was improved with traveling time shortened by half, we saw that all of a sudden there was a boom of tourism and economic growth in Gilgit, he added.

According to the official website of the CPEC Authority, five transport projects under the CPEC have been completed, and among them, three are motorway projects, including KKH Phase II, Multan-Sukkur Motorway(M5), and Hakla – D.I Khan Motorway, adding 809 km to the road network of Pakistan and driving economic activities in the cities along the road.

Meanwhile, the Orange Line Metro train and the Cross Border Optical Fiber Cable lay the foundation for the modernization of Pakistan’s transport system.

Motorways are an important part of Pakistan’s “National Trade Corridor Project” and CPEC, which aims to link its three Arabian Sea ports (Karachi Port, Port Bin Qasim and Gwadar Port) to the rest of the country through its national highways and motorways network and further north with Afghanistan, Central Asia and China.

“The network of roads and Gwadar Port have been established. Now we are moving towards the Gwadar new international airport and the ML-1 railway project, which will further improve logistics, the speed of trading, and people-to-people contact, ” Rana stated.

About “Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), Rana said, it is an initiative of connectivity of not only infrastructure but of economy, trade, and people to people. When connectivity is improved, so does the accessibility to different economies, and trade and movement of technologies will be enhanced.

That is BRI to the world, a catalyst for economic growth and cultural exchanges,” said Rana Ihsan Afzal.

“In the past five years, CPEC has improved connectivity within Pakistan and helped us control load-shedding across the country. Pakistan is looking forward for it to be mature and reach its true potential,” Rana added.

However, rumors and smears on CPEC from certain western and Indian media never cease.
Dismissive of these noises, Rana said, “no one is forcing any country to be part of BRI. It is by choice. Pakistan and China, for example, are close neighbors. When neighbors are friendly with each other and do business, it is only to benefit the people.”

As for challenges occurring in the construction of the CPEC project, Rana said, “definitely if the planning is not properly done as expected, it cannot be blamed on others, we have to look at ourselves.”

Indeed, the year 2022 was challenging for world economies, and especially overwhelming for Pakistan, which was hit hard by devastating floods that inundated almost 1/3 of the lands of the country besides facing other universal problems due to currencies devaluation against the U.S. dollar, soaring energy price, and inflation.

“Currently the biggest problem Pakistan is facing is our foreign reserves have fallen to a very low level. The reason behind it is basically that Pakistan has faced a huge trade deficit,” Rana said, adding that last year Pakistan had imports of almost $82 billion and exports of $32 billion, leaving a trade gap of around $50 billion.

“To reduce the trade deficit and the current account deficit, we have to increase our exports and do import substitution, and we are looking up to the Chinese market, which can import $2.5 to $3 trillion worth of goods each year,” Rana hinted.

He disclosed that the government has already assigned the Ministry of Commerce and the Ministry of Industries and Production to look into where Pakistan has a comparative advantage in terms of exports to China. And “in a general impression, food, fruit and textile products will be the main areas of export.”

According to data from the World Bank, Pakistan’s export to China rose by over 35% from US$ 2,652 million in 2013, the year BRI was proposed, to US$ 3,589 million in 2021.

“Thanks to the CPEC project, a lot of private Chinese investors have come to Pakistan. For example, A Chinese tyre company has established a manufacturing factory in one of our industrial zones, and they are quite pleased with their products produced here,” Rana said.

There are expectations in Pakistan that as China is moving into high-value-added industries, low-skilled industries can move to the country. Rana holds the same view.

“There is huge potential for it. We have a young population that can be utilized in areas where there are more requirement of human resource or labor intensive industries.”

Not only China, but Pakistan also envisages more business with other countries as the CPEC goes deeper and wider. Gwadar port gives access to China via Pakistan to extend trade with Middle and West Asia and Europe and shortens the distance of business connection from a logistical point of view.

“We should take a step forward to utilize the route from Gwadar Port, which links the maritime silk road, to Gilgit, where the land border with China is located. More and more trade will be done through this line under the BRI umbrella and we will benefit from it,” Rana concluded.

CPEC unleashes new horizons of prosperity for Pakistan​

China Pakistan Economic Corridor by supplementing Pakistan’s socio-economic development as the tremendous human capital of the region has been proving as the biggest asset for the country.

By marking the 10th anniversary of its launch under the flagship project of Belt and Road Initiative, CPEC has unfolded substantial opportunities for Pakistan, promising a prosperous and peaceful future for the Pakistani people.

Launched in 2013, CPEC is a corridor linking Pakistan’s Gwadar Port with Kashgar in northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region which highlights agriculture, energy, transport, trade and industrial cooperation.

With investment in the country’s modern transportation networks including roads and railways, energy projects, ports and special economic zones, the CPEC has provided the opportunity for Pakistan to promote development and economic growth.

CPEC, a flagship project of the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), is linked with the long-lasting economic benefits and sustainable development for the people of Pakistan that has generated thousands of jobs for local people by tackling the energy crisis of the country.

CPEC has played a significant role in promoting the in-depth development of the Pakistan-China all-weather strategic cooperative partnership and the high-quality development of the BRI, which has grabbed attention in Pakistan and around the world.

Since the launch of CPEC, China has become the top destination for Pakistan’s students and there are strong links between our people nurtured by artists, academia, the scientific community and the media. It meets the people’s aspirations, wins the people’s hearts and benefits the people’s livelihoods.

With the joint efforts of the two governments, enterprises and all sectors of society, CPEC cooperation has achieved fruitful results and made a great contribution to Pakistan’s national construction and regional interconnection.

Despite numerous obstacles, Pakistan has witnessed economic development in the region as projects under CPEC made major progress over the past few years.

CPEC has shown strong resilience against the challenges such as the COVID-19 pandemic. The staff and workers of the two countries working on CPEC projects have worked dedicatedly hand-in-hand to overcome the difficulties and written a new moving story of Pakistan-China friendship.

The high-quality development of CPEC would certainly provide significant opportunities for the development of Pakistan and countries along the BRI route, helping them implement the global goals for regional prosperity.

CPEC will supplement Pakistan’s socio-economic development as the tremendous human capital of the region is its biggest asset.

China has assisted Pakistan in power projects generating 5,200 MW while 886-km national transmission Network has been completed. Besides, 510-km roads have been constructed under the CPEC. Moreover, 7,000 sets of solar energy cells have been installed in Gwadar to address the energy needs.

The CPEC project has generated huge employment opportunities and out of 5,000 jobs generated in Gwadar, 4,000 are local employees.

After the completion of the first phase of the CPEC, various projects in the field of agriculture, industry, science & technology are being undertaken on priority.

China has played a key role in creating regional awareness to underscore the significance of cultural and educational exchanges through its ventures like the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), resulting in substantial educational, political, economic, and trade cooperation among various countries and regions. The economic zones being established in the country’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), Punjab, Sindh and Baluchistan provinces would bring about immense opportunities for Pakistani people in job and business sectors.

The potential industries being set up in the CPEC special economic zones include food processing, cooking oil, ceramics, gems and jewelry, marble, minerals, agriculture machinery, iron and steel, motorbike assembling, electrical appliances and automobiles.

While globalization is coming under stress, we need to look at China as an example of socio-economic development. CPEC, together with China’s Global Development Initiative and Global Security Initiative, is pivotal for Pakistan to address the sustainability issues, and the integration of security and technology.

CPEC has spread a vast network of roads from the south, east and north of Pakistan, making the tourist resorts in north Pakistan accessible to tourists, and it will play a vital role in the revival of the tourism sector.

Currently, 300,000 people in the country are associated with the tourism industry, and with an uptick in the number of tourists in the country due to better roads and connectivity, the number is likely to increase to 500,000 in the coming years.

Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Germany are among those that have taken moves on the cooperation with Pakistan via the flagship project. As China extends a welcoming attitude toward the investment, it is believed that the CPEC would continue to attract more third-country investors.

For Saudi Arabia, its intention to invest in CPEC projects started as early as 2019 when the Middle Eastern country announced plans to set up a $10 billion oil refinery in Pakistan’s deep-water port of Gwadar.

The CPEC has brought Pakistan direct investment totaling $25.4 billion over the past years while many more is expected to be pumped under this project in Pakistan that may cultivate huge benefits for Pakistan in the future.

World Bank lauds CPEC for unlocking vast opportunities and economic growth in Pakistan​

March 9, 2023

ISLAMABAD: China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is recognized by World Bank as offering enormous opportunities to Pakistan.

It has proved itself as a vital economic tonic to Pakistan by administrating those development booster shots that are revamping its infrastructure, energy, export, trade, transportation, agriculture, employment, medicine, Information Technology, mobile technology and many more, according to a report carried by Gwadar Pro on Wednesday.

With these booster shots, during the last 10 years, more than 30 projects generating direct and indirect 200,000 jobs have been completed and more are in different phases of development, setting a tone for sustainable economic progress. Besides, more than 6,000 MW of electricity has been injected into the national grid, 809 kilometers of highway have been built and 886 kilometers of transmission lines have been installed first time in the history of Pakistan.

CPEC has also earned recognition from the World Bank Report entitled “The Web of Transport Corridors in South Asia”.

“With investments in road, railways and ports, the $60 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) offers enormous potential for Pakistan to boost its economy, reduce poverty, spread benefits widely and help those likely to be affected by the new trade route,” the World Bank Report says.

CPEC has to be analyzed as per its impacts and performance setting aside traditional prejudices. One thing that must be kept in mind by doomsayers is that CPEC is not a remedy for governance weaknesses, system hiccups, political instability,
bureaucratic red-tapism, and corruption. Such hideous dynamics are the creeping root cause behind Pakistan’s limping economy.

Since its inception ten years ago, CPEC has transformed Pakistan’s infrastructural landscape. According to the Ministry of Energy, by October 2022, 11 projects with a total capacity of over 6,370 MW have been completed, and an HVDC Transmission Line of 880 km has been constructed.

Three more projects with a capacity of around 1,200 MW are expected to be completed within 2023-24. Most recently, the 1,320 MW Thar Coal Block-I has started commercial operations.

In addition to the completed projects under CPEC, several other projects are under process, which will further boost Pakistan’s energy infrastructure. The 884MW Suki Kinari Hydropower Project in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has already completed 70% of the work.

The Kohala Hydropower Project in Azad Jammu and Kashmir, with a capacity of 1,124 MW, the Azad Pattan Hydropower Project with a capacity of 700.7 MW, and the Cacho Wind Power Project with a capacity of 50 MW are also under process.

The Western Energy (Pvt.) Ltd. Wind Power Project is another project in process, with a capacity of 50 MW. These projects will help increase the country’s renewable energy capacity, providing clean and cheap energy to the people.

Once completed, these projects will add a significant amount of electricity to the national grid, reducing the country’s dependence on imported fuel.

Moreover, CPEC has also helped Pakistan upgrade its transportation infrastructure. The Peshawar-Karachi Motorway (Multan-Sukkur Section), Hakla – D.I Khan Motorway, and the Orange Line Metro Train in Lahore are some of the infrastructure projects completed under CPEC. The KKH Phase II (Havelian – Thakot Section) has also been completed, which has received international recognition.

China-Pakistan bilateral meeting on CPEC held​

April 5, 2023

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special initiatives Ahsan Iqbal and Chinese Vice Foreign Minister, Sun Weidong agreed to further enhance cooperation under the CPEC as both held a bilateral meeting on Tuesday in Beijing, said a press release.

The planning minister was accompanied by the Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Finance, Tariq Bajwa, Ambassador Moinul Haque and Embassy officials.

The meeting was marked by traditional sentiments of warmth and mutual trust that form the hallmark of China-Pakistan ties. Acknowledging the timeless and time-tested nature of the bilateral friendship, the two sides reaffirmed the centrality of the ‘All-Weather Strategic Cooperative Partnership’ between the two countries.

The two sides reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral relations, including cooperation under the China-Pakistan Economic Cooperation (CPEC), trade, economic and financial cooperation, cultural exchanges, and people-to-people ties, and reaffirmed their resolve to further strengthen cooperation on multilateral fora.

The minister thanked the Chinese side for its critical support to Pakistan to ease the country’s economic difficulties and amid Covid-19 pandemic.

He also conveyed gratitude for China’s generous support for the recent unprecedented floods in Pakistan.
Lol, where is my prize, one of the main architects of CPEC?

China and Pakistan shouldn't waste time and start working on the train link between the two countries, that will be the most meaningful long term investment both countries can make. Let's get Arab investors on board as it will speed up trade between Middle East, Africa, South Asia and China.
Projects updates ...

Transportation Infrastructure​

New Havelian Dry PortTBDFeasibility completed
Project to be put on fast track
Framework agreement signed in May 2017

Project details
Khuzdar-Basima Highway (N-30), 110 kmTBDFeasibility and PC-I completed
LOI forwarded to Chinese side
Procedural formalities to be completed shortly (ECNEC approved the projects in May 2017)
Frame Work Agreement shared with Chinese Side

Project details
KKH Phase III(Raikot-Thakot Section)280kmTBDFeasibility and PC-I completed
LOI forwarded to Chinese side
Procedural formalities to be completed shortly

Project details
D.I.Khan-Quetta Highway (N-50), 533kmTBDFeasibility stage
Project details
How are projects signed 6 YEARS AGO only 25% complete lol
It is all agreements , Formalities before design and construction, so basically all preparatory work as 25% complete, before actual works includes land .
Cross Border Optical Fiber Cable 🛂

Total length: 820 kilometers
Total jobs created: 1100
Location: Khunjrab to Rawalpindi
Project completion date: July 2018




SSRL Thar Coal Block-I Power Plant

Capacity: 1320 MW (660×2)
Total Jobs Created: 2000
Current Status: Operational ✅
Project Completion Date: February 5, 2023


HUBCO ThalNova Thar Coal Power Project

Capacity: 330 MW
Total Jobs Created: 305
Current Status: Operational ✅
Project Completion Date: February 17, 2023



Decade-long CPEC brings Chinese companies, technology to Pakistan, says minister​

Ali Jaswal | Xinhua
Jul 12, 2023

LAHORE, Pakistan, July 13 (Xinhua) -- Thanks to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), Pakistan is now slowly moving from imported fuels to local fuel for power generation and from outdated technology to new Chinese technology, a Pakistani minister told Xinhua.

"This shift is happening and Chinese companies are much more visible now. They are bringing their technology, their management to Pakistan, and they are teaching Pakistani engineers and workers," Pakistan's Minister for Power Khurram Dastgir Khan said in a recent interview at a power transmission project under the CPEC.

The deeper penetration of Chinese companies into the energy sector is one of the major positive developments that have happened in the country as a result of CPEC, Khan said.

Highlighting the prospects of the transmission network, he said that 660kV Matiari-Lahore high-voltage direct current transmission project under the CPEC is the most advanced transmission project in Pakistan's history.

The project, being the only transmission project under CPEC, was crucial for Pakistan as it connects the country's south to the north and vice versa, he said.

This is now one of the principal backbones of Pakistan's national transmission line, he told Xinhua, noting that it has been operational for over 1,000 days without any issue, which is also a testament to the Chinese and Pakistani engineers who work here and who have done so well in very challenging circumstances.

Regarding the 10th anniversary of CPEC this year, the minister said China supported Pakistan in 2013 when no Western country was willing to invest.

By the end of 2022, CPEC has brought 25.4 billion U.S. dollars in direct investment to Pakistan and has created about 236,000 jobs for the country, the Chinese embassy revealed in its recent data.

China dignitary's visit set to energize CPEC progress​

Ahsan Iqbal hails iconic corridor’s milestone achievements

July 31, 2023

Minister for Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives, Ahsan Iqbal, highlighted the momentous achievements made under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) during the past decade, showcasing the strengthening relations between the two countries, often referred to as the "Iron Brothers."

Addressing a news conference ahead of the visit of the Chinese Deputy Prime Minister to celebrate CPEC's 10-year milestone, he emphasized the significance of the CPEC agreements signed in 2015, which transformed Pakistan's image from a security-focused state to an attractive investment destination.

Commending Chinese President Xi Jinping's pivotal role in enhancing Pakistan's global appeal as an investment hub and fostering economic cooperation and development, the minister noted that CPEC witnessed the successful completion of numerous projects worth approximately $25 billion within just three years.

These projects spanned various sectors, including power generation, infrastructure development, and education. Among these, the Thar coal project stood out as a monumental achievement, tapping into Pakistan's vast coal reserves to contribute significantly to the country's energy needs.

Iqbal stressed that CPEC not only created opportunities for Pakistani workers and engineers to gain expertise in modern technology and project management but also facilitated thousands of Pakistani students in pursuing higher education in China.

Grateful for China's steadfast support and investment in Pakistan during challenging times, the minister asserted that China's investment of billions of dollars in CPEC projects exemplified the country as Pakistan's most reliable friend and a crucial partner in economic development.

Discussing the current government's approach to CPEC, Iqbal mentioned that the revival of CPEC initiatives under Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif's leadership demonstrated Pakistan's renewed commitment to economic growth and cooperation with China. This approach had led to positive changes in Pakistan's economy, drawing renewed global interest in the country.

Iqbal highlighted the remarkable improvements in Gwadar Port's cargo handling and the successful completion of long-pending projects that had remained stalled for years under the previous government.

Looking forward to the upcoming visit of the Chinese Deputy Prime Minister, the minister anticipated that the event would foster further progress in business-to-business links, industrialization, and cooperation in science and technology between China and Pakistan.

Addressing the ML-1 project, Iqbal expressed optimism that the technical parameters had been agreed upon, paving the way for its implementation in the near future.

Emphasizing the importance of continuing the policies that led to Pakistan's economic recovery and development under the CPEC framework, the minister urged perseverance in building upon the strong relationship between Pakistan and China. He reaffirmed that CPEC remained a symbol of bilateral friendship and successful economic cooperation.
CPEC is progressing as per perceived plan and speed of projects was only affected due to COVID-19.

During the last ten years, USD 17 billion have already been invested in 26 projects
and 30 projects worth USD 8.5 billion are underway.

36 projects worth USD 28.4 billion are in the pipeline and will be executed as planned.

CPEC has already significantly addressed Pakistan’s energy requirements by adding over 6,000 MW of electricity to the national grid and installing 886 km power transmission lines.

Under CPEC various infrastructure projects has been completed including 809 km roads across Pakistan and first metro line in Lahore.

CPEC projects have directly or indirectly generated 200,000 jobs in Pakistan thus significantly contributing towards its economy.

As a significant part of the Belt Road Initiative (BRI), CPEC is seen as the “symbol of a new era of connectedness and integration” for Pakistan.

Various projects are in the pipeline which include SEZs, ML-1 and projects in several other fields.

Pakistan is committed to further cement and enhance the CPEC portfolios and further expand it.

Peace in Afghanistan has further enhanced the expansion of CPEC to CARs which will soon materialize.

China and Pakistan just celebrated the 10 years of CPEC in August 2023 which speaks volumes about the bilateral commitments.

Pakistan has already raised 2 x Army Divisions and various Special Police Units to ensure security of Chinese in Pakistan.

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