Pakistan to leave no stone unturned to materialize CPEC in time: PM
ISLAMABAD ( BMZ REPORT )
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif says Pakistan will leave no stone unturned to materialize the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) in time.
He was addressing a ceremony of departure of the first mega pilot trade cargo at Gwadar Port on Sunday.
The Prime Minister said it is an historic day marking the materialization of the vision and idea of one belt one road.
He said CPEC is aims at integrating development and commerce of various regions across Asia and Europe.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has termed the historic China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project “a world of opportunities,” claiming the sharing of fruits of progress by the neighbouring countries can bring peace and harmony to the whole region.
“Efforts of the federal and provincial governments and the Pakistan Army have remained successful in making the people of Balochistan stakeholder in CPEC,” the prime minister said while addressing the participants of the Trade Pilot Project ceremony in Gwadar. “Pakistan is located at the intersection of three engines of growth in Asia… the CPEC will interconnect these engines,” he added.
Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Sun Weidong said the day is very significant for CPEC and to China Pakistan relations. He said it is for the first time that a convoy successfully passed through the western part of Pakistan from north to the South. He said it is also for the first time that the Gwadar Port is exporting containers to the overseas destinations. It proved that the Port has the resources, design and handing capacity. He said the trade convoy is an example of the spirit of mutual cooperation, joint construction and mutual benefit and win situation of both the countries. He said local people will get job opportunities with the completion of Gwadar port.
Speaking on the occasion, Chief Minister Balochistan Sanaullah Zehri welcomed the Chinese mega trade convoy and termed it a landmark in implementing the grand China Pakistan Economic Corridor project. He appreciated the development vision of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. He also appreciated Chief of Army Staff and Pakistan Army for arranging security of CPEC. He said Gwadar Port is the base of CPEC which will bring prosperity to the country and particularly Balochistan.
Addressing the ceremony, Chinese Company Sino Trans’s representative said the first trade convoy actualized the connectivity through CPEC. He thanked the Pakistan Government and armed forces for providing best security to the convey. He said China and Pakistan are best neighbours, partners and friends. He hoped that the CPEC will be completed on time.
In his remarks, Director General Frontier Works Organization Major General Muhammad Afzal said China Pakistan Economic Corridor is a classic example of Pakistan-China friendship and cooperation under one belt one road initiative. He said the trade convoy covered three thousand kilometers journey from Kashgar to Gwadar. He said the trade convoy reached Gwadar after passing through Gilgit Baltistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab and Sindh. He said FWO constructed 873 kilometers of highways in Balochistan in two years.
Strict security measures have been taken to ensure the smooth inauguration of exports through the Gwadar port. Earlier today, the first Chinese trade convoy arrived at the port through CPEC as contingents of special security division of the Pakistan Army provided security to the convoy. Starting its journey from Kashghar, the Chinese trade cargo reached Gwadar safely from Gilgit-Baltistan after travelling throughout the country.
The government has already allocated land for Gwadar Free Trade Zone and the government has also announced concessions for Gwadar Port and Free Trade Zone in Balochistan. Moreover, the projects of Exclusive Industrial Park Processing Zone and Mineral Economic Zone are also being executed on priority basis.
A project worth Rs 25 billion is being executed for the development of Gwadar city keeping in view its importance. The federal government gave a free hand to the provincial government in that regard that designed the project considering Gwadar’s basic needs.
The federal government provided all resources for the installation of a plant to make the sea water drinkable, besides launching an additional Rs11.5 billion project for clean drinking water to Gwadar during 2015-16. The quality of underground water is also being improved and the existing 50-bed hospital is being upgraded to 300-bed facility.
A university and a technical and vocational training institute are also being set up in Gwadar to produce required manpower. The locals will be preferred for enrollment in these institutes.
Under CPEC, the government has prioritized energy and road infrastructure. To meet the electricity needs, a 300-megawatt power plant is being installed in Gwadar that will also be linked to national grid.
A Special Security Force has been raised to provide a security cover to the Chinese investors. Gwadar is also being made a safe city too boost investors’ confidence.
The construction of a new international airport is also under way in Gwadar to facilitate the movement of investors. Moreover, Gwadar city is also being connected with rest of the country through road and rail networks.