- Parliamentary committee, working group on cards for consultation and monitoring of CPEC project
- PM says western route of economic corridor will be constructed first, funds will be released soon
An All Parties Conference (APC) in Islamabad on Thursday reached consensus on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project and pledged to take full political ownership.
During the meeting, Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal briefed the parliamentary leaders about the different routes of CPEC and energy and other projects to be implemented under it. He said suggestions would be invited from the provinces and then discussed with the Chinese authorities for their inclusion in the CPEC.
The minister said that the CPEC project would benefit all the provinces and Gwadar will be connected with Kasghar with three different routes. He said the project was not merely the name of a road but it envisaged establishment of industrial zones and power projects. Most of the power projects under the corridor will be established in Sindh. He said this project will attract more tourists to Gilgit-Baltistan.
Moreover, Iqbal counselled Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to constitute a working group comprising representatives from all provinces to make recommendations regarding developments in the corridor route.
Addressing on the occasion, PM Sharif announced that the western route of the economic corridor will be constructed first, for which funds will be released soon.
Sharif said the government was determined that western alignment would be completed on priority basis between Gwadar and Khunjrab. He said Hassanabadal, Mianwali, Dera Ismail Khan,Zhob, Quetta, Kalat, Panjgor and Turbat would be linked with Gwadar and work would begin immediately on Kughal Kot and Mianwali section.
Thanking the political leadership for their support to the CPEC, the premier pledged to parliamentary leaders that all matters regarding the CPEC project will be kept transparent. He added that moving forward on national matters with unity will send a positive message to China, showing that Pakistan as a nation is committed to the project.
The premier also underscored that the corridor holds great importance in the history of Pakistan as such investments had not taken place in the past. He said a parliamentary committee would be formed for consultation and monitoring of the project and give the CPEC a national ownership.
In addition, a working group having representation of the provinces would be formed in the Planning and Development Division which would ensure that the provinces were part of the historic development process.