As Radio Pakistan reported on October 8, 2019, Pakistani President Dr Arif Alvi has proclaimed a decree for the “China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Authority” (CPECA) foundation. This decision was made thoroughly, because several years ago a plan was carried out to establish such a high-level institution, with the highest independence and powers, to achieve the planned results out of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).
It is known that currently Pakistan is undergoing its toughest economic crisis with its foreign debt having crossed $100 billion. The reduction of foreign monetary transmissions and export seen in the previous 2 years has exaggerated the crisis. Pakistani government was to address the IMF for being provided an assistance and signed a 39-month restructuring program. According to this scenario, China-Pakistan Economic Corridor is considered as necessary as oxygen for Pakistan’s suffering economy.
According to the report, CPEC authority is eager to “accelerate the pace of CPEC-related activities, find new drives of growth, unlock the potential of the interlinked production network and global value chains through regional and global connectivity”. It is supposed to eliminate some of the bureaucratic obstacles and optimize cooperation among various ministries and departments, creating the ground for unobstructed implementation of CPEC projects.
This is the first time Pakistan becomes engaged in such a global initiative, so it does not have enough experience. The lack of experience and capability, literate planning and human resources made Pakistan struggle hard to use the full potential of CPEC. Still, the progress of CPEC projects has been sufficient, and most of the early harvest projects are already complete or nearly complete. The results of completed projects are being perceived by the society, as power cuts have either completely been ceased or reduced to almost zero level. Road and motorway networks are playing a very important role in Pakistani transport industry, and ultimately contributing toward the socio-economic development of the nation. A couple of years back, the GDP grew from 4.5 percent to 5.7 percent due to the CPEC initiatives.
In August, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan proclaimed that the government was establishing CPECA to ensure the completion of the corridor’s projects on time. He said that CPECA would help to provide cooperation among the corresponding departments.
“The completion of CPEC foundation will not only bring benefit to Pakistan and China, but also tothe entire region”, – Khan said, adding that the on-time completion of CPEC projects was the most significant priority of the government and CPEC was an excellent example of mutual attempts and partnership between Pakistan and China. He also stated that there were full consensus and harmony between the two nations.
The President’s proclaiming of the decree for CPECA foundation coincides with Khan’s visit to Beijing on October 7-9, 2019. Khan was accompanied by a high-level delegation consisting of important members of his Cabinet. His visit included addressing the China-Pakistan business forum and CPEC was a major agenda. It has further strengthened the ideal existing understanding between the two countries.
Pakistani Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Khusro Bakhtiar said:
“Solid efforts on all aspects of China-Pakistan relations during the visit are supposed”, – expressing the hope that it would take CPEC cooperation to new heights so that benefits of Pakistan’s economic progress could reach its people at the earliest.
It is expected that the foundation of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Authority will optimize Chinese and Pakistani relations so that to implement the projects fast and unobstructed. It will be instrumental in widening and speeding up of projects under CPEC. It will be a catalyst for the revival of Pakistan’s economy and facilitation of life of common Pakistani people.
Pakistan is committed to making CPEC a success project and role model for the rest of the world. It is the flagship project and promises a far-reaching impact.