Russia denies secret CPEC talks with Pakistan


The Russian Foreign Ministry on Tuesday denied media reports that Pakistan and Russia had held secret negotiations for cooperation in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project.

Last week, media reports claimed that Russia’s Federal Security Services chief, Alexander Bogdanov, had visited Pakistan to inspect the Gwadar Port.

“The Pakistani media reports about secret negotiations between Russia and Pakistan on the implementation of projects as part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) are not true to the facts,” a statement from Russian Information and Press Department stated. “Moscow is not discussing the possibility of joining this project with Islamabad,” it added.

The corridor is about 3,000-kilometre long consisting of highways, railways and pipelines that will connect China’s Xinjiang province to the rest of the world through Gwadar port.

The Russian government, however, said it would strengthen economic ties with Pakistan as cooperation between both countries had inherent values.

“Russian companies are implementing business projects in Pakistan, including the planned construction of the North-South gas pipeline from Karachi to Lahore, on a bilateral basis,” the statement said.