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China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Posted by on Sep 11, 2015 in Uncategorized

As the diplomatic relationship between China and the United States continues to evolve, the East Asian nation also has reason to cozy up to Pakistan. In recent months, the government of Pakistan has made certain decisions which have inevitably led to the country being drawn further into China’s geopolitical attention.

Aerial View of Port of Gawadar in Pakistan (image from Wikipedia)

Aerial View of Port of Gawadar in Pakistan (image from Wikipedia)

About 5 months ago, Chinese President Xi Jinping was in Islamabad, Pakistan where he unveiled a $46 billion infrastructure spending blueprint for Pakistan, to serve as a linchpin of Beijing’s drive to open new trade and transport routes across Asia. Despite decades of mismanagement and a feeble socioeconomic infrastructure, Pakistan does enjoy a strategic location. Among its neighbors, the only one with which Pakistan has maintained cordial ties since independence is China. Enjoying genial relations with a neighbor that is also a major power is clearly a plus for an otherwise diplomatically isolated Pakistan.

For China, which has begun to build a presence in multiple regions, Pakistan is a gateway to the Gulf States and Middle East, where China seeks to showcase its soft power, and develop trade and diplomatic links. While the U.S. still dominates in the Middle East, China has certainly made ground over the past decade. It wants to continue that progress, and supplementing its energy trade, improving the balance of trade, and identifying new investment opportunities with more robust commercial links will be vital. Securing a route to the Indian Ocean via the port of Gwadar will do the job nicely, and will also help China develop its military presence in the region.

So Beijing’s decision to establish an economic corridor in Pakistan, switching access to the Middle East from a lengthy sea route to a much shorter (about 750 miles) road journey is a win-win. Xi’s visit saw 51 agreements signed, among them the pledge of $46 billion in investment. Many of the agreements focus on infrastructure development in Pakistan; however, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project is the standout development.

The CPEC will run from the Chinese city of Kashgar to the port of Gwadar in Pakistan. Gwadar is a deep-sea port that was initially developed and upgraded by the Chinese, who now have effective control. An all-weather, all-season port, Gwadar is strategically located, particularly vis-à-vis Dubai and Oman. Aware of its importance, China has now decided to lay down road (primarily) and air-train networks (gradually).

Now, with agreements signed and budgets allocated, the respective states are trying to eliminate or at least minimize the hurdles to CPEC that remain. Pakistan in particular has a job on its hands dealing with insurgents operating along the proposed CPEC. The country has been combating an Islamist insurrection for more than a decade. Nonetheless, it still hopes that Chinese investment will spur its long-underperforming economy.

Despite the concerns, the CPEC is potentially a game changer that could transform economic growth and inject some prosperity and capital into Pakistan’s frayed socio-economic fabric. However, it is unlikely to come to fruition in either the short or medium terms. Mega projects like the CPEC all too frequently run aground, either falling prey to a lack of vision or stalling on political tussles. If that happens to the CPEC, it would be a sad outcome for a Pakistan that desperately needs some good news.

 

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About the Author:Nauman

I was born and raised in Pakistan and moved to the United States in 2004. I love writing about the Urdu language highlighting the peculiarities about the cultural, traditions, social events, places and personalities in Pakistan.


Comments:

  1. Erum Zia:

    CPEC is no doubt a very big opportunity for Pakistan but it is not the first time that Pakistan is getting golden chance for her development but the problem is our political system and so called think tanks who are not only destroying the nation day by day but fulfilling their accounts too. China knows that how much corrupt we are but they know too that how to deal with us and as they need this corridor so it will work despite all the problems faced by us but we have to face some new problems too and with this we can cash our great geographical location and built our country.

  2. Muhammad Kamran:

    Yes C-Pack is a such great project for Pakistani peoples and we need to cash this opportunity for our good future. Because our political people are not able to create anything ales like this. am a big fan of Mr. Aftab Iqbal because a lot’s of time they are trying to teach us and also our politician but no body are follow him. Anyway just we can pray for our nation because they also don’t want to wake up.

  3. Tabish Khan:

    No doubt, this is a grand project and definitely will be gateway for Pakistan’s economical strength as well as employment strength.
    But how can we see this project completed beside our internal political and economical issues.
    May Allah bless this country!!
    Long live Pakistan.

  4. Hassan irshad:

    I love pakistan……

  5. Zain ul hassan:

    Great opportunity for us

  6. Yusra shoaib:

    Seapack is the great opportunity for Pakistan to strengthen it’s economy. This project will reduce unemployment, make our nation experienced and help much more…..

  7. sheryarazeem:

    great opportunity for us …………

  8. shykH_AmjaD:

    Such Great Opportunity for the Pakistani’we all are agreed….

  9. Mahboob ali mangi:

    Really CPEC is a magnetic project this will be change the phenotype of pakistan hoping that the project will remove all the difficulties and bring the prosperity for the nation.

  10. Muhammad Zafar Khan Qadri:

    After the completion of this project Pakistan and China will be get great opportunities in the economy, employment, import & export of Pakistan & China products. We pay that this project bring the green prosperity for the nation.

    Hyderabad, Sindh, Pakistan.

  11. Abdul waris:

    I hope this project will be very useful for all the nations of pak and China.

  12. Muhammad Shahid:

    May Allah bless this country!!
    Long live Pakistan.

  13. Muhammad Shahid:

    May Allah bless this country!! Great opportunity For us
    Long live Pakistan.

  14. Rana Shahzaib Khan:

    CPEC is no doubt a very big opportunity for Pakistan but it is not the first time that Pakistan is getting golden chance for her development but the problem is our political system and so called think tanks who are not only destroying the nation day by day but fulfilling their accounts too. China knows that how much corrupt we are but they know too that how to deal with us and as they need this corridor so it will work despite all the problems faced by us but we have to face some new problems too and with this we can cash our great geographical location and built our country.

  15. Aamir:

    Realy cpec project is very good oppertunity of development as well as pakistan and middlest. This will impact in future. China producing many products for the whole word, no any country refuse for this. pakistan will jointly progress with china inshallah

  16. Yousaf Khilji:

    C pack it is great apportunity for the progress of both the contry and its people also for the
    but unfortunately our politician will do corruption .and impartial inequitable contributions among the province . Baluchistan will particularly effected .

  17. Mir Murtaza:

    Really that is good oppertunity for us and our Nation, But we do not know their thinking, aim, Idea. God gifted pakistan with Good geographical location, We beleive that is better for our people if our politics are sincere with this nation. One thing i tell u all of that all over world trying to control our economically growth.

  18. Sued shahzad:

    It is a golden opportunity for our country we all are agreed to this project
    Long life Pakistan
    Long life China
    Long life pak China friendship
    Long life Seapack

  19. salim raza:

    I agree with this that this is a mega project and it will bring prosperity in Pakistan .But our most politicians are setting in the parliament don’t know the importance even the meaning of c-pack.so how they will inculcate its importance in thd mind of people.
    I love my country Pakistan and proud on China to have true friendship.


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