Published Date: Oct 31, 2017
CPEC to help Pakistan combat poverty, says Chinese official
ISLAMABAD: The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will prove a vital element in Pakistan’s efforts towards combating poverty as the projects such as power generation and construction of roads and highways will create significant new economic opportunities for the people of Pakistan.
Speaking at an event organized by Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) here on Monday, Lijian Zhao, Deputy Chief of Mission, People’s Republic of China in Pakistan, said that China’s successful poverty alleviation efforts over the past few years could be attributed to a number of factors that were offered at community level aiming to improve their live through new income generation activities.
He said that no single remedy is available for the poverty alleviation and keeping this in view, the Chinese government helped communities through multiple approaches involving measures like offering subsidies, financing income generating activities at local level and providing enabling policy environment and support for area specific economic activities.
Lijian Zhao, while quoting various examples of the Chinese government’s success in poverty reduction, informed that China is all set to become a poverty-free country by the year 2020. He said that a financing arrangement for projects at local level by federal, provincial and county governments has been introduced so that the broader ownership for such developmental activities could be achieved.
Besides, he said, the banks in Chine are ensuring micro-financing projects at local level that range from industrial to farming related activities. Besides, educational subsidies were offered to students so that they could avail educational facilities and hence improve their ability to have access for better economic opportunities.
He said that CPEC is providing huge cushion for Pakistan’s efforts on combating poverty as the projects like power generation and the constructions of roads and highways are offering huge new economic opportunities to the people of Pakistan. He said that although China and Pakistan are having different political systems and environments and hence, the poverty reduction solutions that China had applied cannot be exactly replicated in Pakistan, yet there are various areas where lessons could be learned and adapted according to local needs.
Executive Director SDPI Abid Qayyum Suleri lauded the Chinese success in poverty reduction, especially by cultivating huge success under MDGs on poverty reduction. He said that China has achieved the goals through targeted interventions and is creating strong ownership of the people with the developmental process.
He added further that Pakistan could apply at least multi-tiers coordination at different levels of governance and provinces with the help of the federal government and can take the financing for local projects at district level.
Shakeel Ahmad Ramay of SDPI earlier informed the audience about the Chinese government’s commitment with regard to poverty reduction and said, "We need to explore the areas where these lessons could be beneficial for poverty reduction in Pakistan as well."