MOON Desk: Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif urged India on Wednesday to take advantage of the benefits of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) instead of creating hurdles in its way.
The premier made the remark as he felicitated Pakistan and China for having successfully completed 10 years of CPEC – which PM Shehbaz said would also prove beneficial for neighboring Iran, Afghanistan, Central Asia and the entire region.
In a message of congratulations, the PM congratulated the leadership of Pakistan and China and the people of the two countries saying that Pakistan and China are iron brothers, and CPEC is a new chapter in this time-tested and evergreen strategic cooperative partnership.
The PM said that CPEC was also a manifestation of the vision of “development for all of China’s great leader Xi Jinping and our Quaid Muhammad Nawaz Sharif”.
He said the BRI is also a manifestation of President Xi Jinping’s philosophy of peace, friendship, economic partnership and coexistence. He said CPEC is also President Xi Jinping’s gift to the people of Pakistan.The PM regretted that CPEC was obstructed for four years, and” baseless allegations were levelled against our great friend China”. He said the enemies of CPEC are enemies of development, peace and prosperity in Pakistan and the region, and they do not want our people to get rid of poverty. He said we are accelerating the pace of CPEC, which is a game-changer project to eradicate poverty, unemployment and economic slump.
The premier invited India to take advantage of the benefits of CPEC instead of creating hurdles in its way. He said it is not just a project with objectives of improvement in road, rail, port and air routes, but also a great plan for health, education, skill development and partnership in the development process.
“CPEC is a beautiful plan of connectivity of not only the regions but also the hearts of people. It is a game-changer project of economic regionalisation in the current era of globalisation,” he said. Shehbaz maintained that CPEC is also a journey for lifting up the living standard of the people of Pakistan and providing them with an environment of peace after bringing them out of poverty.
He said CPEC is a tool for cementing bilateral relations between Pakistan and China and the beginning of a new era of mutual partnership. It also includes projects ranging from water supply to education, technical training and skill development. Shehbaz said the construction of nine Special Economic Zones across the country under CPEC will facilitate technology transfer and industrial collaboration and increase local production.
He said the inclusion of capacity building of the National Disaster Management Authority and proactive measures for the prevention of natural calamities are also part of the CPEC. It also includes joint ventures for agricultural development that will also ensure food security in the country.