The Express Tribune
Published Date: Aug 7, 2020
Time for masses to reap dividends of CPEC: Asim Bajwa
China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Authority Chairman Lieutenant General (retd) Asim Saleem Bajwa on Friday said that the government’s focus was to bring CPEC dividends to the masses as the mega project enters the second phase.
During a webinar organised by Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI), he said the development of Gwadar port will soon be completed which would bring prosperity in remote regions along the road and projects.
He expressed his “deep satisfaction” over Gwadar port operating at its full potential. He elaborated that Gwadar East bay expressway and Gwadar airport are under construction and will soon connect the soon to be mega city to rest of Pakistan and the world..
Webinar arranged by SDPI today widely attended-As we enter Phase-2 of CPEC,our focus is to bring its dividends to masses in Pakistan.Will develop Gwadar port,build connectivity to it, work to bring prosperity in remote regions along the roads/ projects. #cpec #CPECMakingProgress pic.twitter.com/BYFLqEhfzL
— Asim Saleem Bajwa (@AsimSBajwa) August 7, 2020
He further added that Gwadar project exceeds its primary goal of mobilising a deep seaport and extends to encompass development of Gwadar Economic District and socioeconomic progress in South Balochistan.
On the occasion, Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing spoke in appreciation of collaboration and economic partnership between Pakistan and China through CPEC and development of Gwadar port. Despite challenges of coronavirus pandemic, breakthroughs were made in the implementation of Gwadar project, he added.
On Wednesday, the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec) approved the strategically important Mainline-1 railway project of the CPEC worth $6.8 billion, paving way for loan negotiations with Beijing, which would finance 90% of the cost.
Under the CPEC Framework, ML-1 is the only strategic project being finalised as part of the initial $46 billion deals.
The local component of the ML-1 project has been estimated at Rs672.8 billion or slightly over $4 billion. The foreign exchange component is estimated at $2.71 billion.
Under the project, the existing 2,655-km long track will be upgraded. The speed of passenger trains will increase from 65 to 110 km/hour to 165 km/hour and the line capacity will increase from 34 to 137/171 trains each way per day.