Corridor connects Belt and Road to bring more benefits to region
The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a flagship project under the Belt and Road Initiative, is a network of highways, railways, pipelines and optical cables currently under construction throughout Pakistan.
The 3,000-kilometer-long corridor starts from China's Kashgar and ends at Pakistan's Gwadar Port, connecting the Silk Road Economic Belt in the north with the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road in the south.
The new growth points created by the CPEC will further boost economic ties between the two countries in the long run, as they deploy more resources in technological collaboration, infrastructure development and people-to-people exchanges, according to Wei Jianguo, vice-chairman of the China Center for International Economic Exchanges.
Wei said the CPEC is not targeted at any third party and aims to bring benefits to the entire region and become an important driving force for regional integration.
The CPEC has progressed in four major agreed areas: ports, transportation infrastructure, energy and industrial cooperation.
To date, nine projects have been completed and 13 are under construction, and it has so far created 70,000 direct jobs for the local people, data from the National Development and Reform Commission show.
Currently, 15 energy projects in Pakistan, with a total capacity of 11,110 megawatts are planned as a priority, Of which, 11 are under construction or in operation with a total capacity of 6,910 mW.
Wei stressed that the CPEC is development-oriented and has adopted advanced technologies and strict environmental protection standards.
Any CPEC project, whether at the planning or construction stage, is equally negotiated, fully discussed and jointly implemented by China and Pakistan. These projects strictly follow the principle of market orientation and the international business model, said Li Gang, vice-president of the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation in Beijing.
For the next step, Li said China will also explore more pragmatic cooperation with Pakistan in such areas as poverty alleviation and healthcare via development of the CPEC.
China is considering setting up an agricultural technology demonstration center in Pakistan to improve local agricultural technology, production efficiency and value-added agricultural industry, said the Chinese embassy in Pakistan in August.
These moves will strengthen scientific and technological cooperation with Pakistan, establish a China-Pakistan Joint Research Center for Earth Science, strengthen scientific research on disaster reduction and prevention, promote ecological and environmental protection, and help develop green and sustainable growth in Pakistan, said Sun Fuquan, a researcher at the Beijing-based Chinese Academy of Science and Technology for Development.
China has also started to discuss with Pakistan and Afghanistan ways to improve regional connectivity and people's livelihoods in border areas by extending the CPEC to Afghanistan.
The three countries agreed to establish a trilateral dialogue mechanism in June last year and they have built communication channels to reinforce trilateral cooperation in politics, economy and security.
China is holding the first China International Import Expo in Shanghai, which will last through Saturday. Twelve "Guest of Honor" countries, including Brazil, Germany, Hungary, Russia and the United Kingdom, are setting up pavilions.
Among them, Pakistan has sent a large delegation of exporters and set up exhibitions, according to information provided by China International Import Expo Bureau.
(China Daily 11/05/2018 page20)
(Source_title：Corridor connects Belt and Road to bring more benefits to region)