Pakistan closely coordinating with China for planning, implementation of CPEC: Nawaz

DAWN.com
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif  shakes hands with China's President Xi Jinping. —AFP
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif shakes hands with China’s President Xi Jinping. —AFP

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said Pakistan strongly favours cooperation and synergetic partnerships across regions to ensure socio-economic development and prosperity.

He was speaking at the leaders’ roundtable on policy synergy in Beijing on Monday, Radio Pakistan reported.

“It is imperative that we appreciate the ‘Belt and Road’ initiative in its proper perspective of interconnected development. It is now turning into the centre of gravity for half of the world’s economies in Asia, Africa and Europe,” the prime minister was quoted as saying.

The premier said as part of the same initiative under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) banner, “we have made phenomenal progress in a short span of time through active participation in the areas of infrastructure, energy, industrial zones, and telecommunications”.

He, however, said four areas require more focus.

“First, overall progress should be reviewed as we all stand to benefit from early harvest projects. Second, we need more synergy in our development strategies both at the regional and international levels. Third, this initiative must continue to deliver “win-win” outcomes. Four, we should build on the solid foundations of One Belt One Road to make it a living, growing and organic partnership,” the premier was quoted as saying.

Nawaz said Pakistan is harmonising national development plans with CPEC project, closely coordinating with China for planning and implementation of CPEC and liaising with international financial institutions for policy alignment.

He called for expanding consensus for One Belt One Road, enhancing cooperation in development and implementation and prepare a blueprint and roadmap for long-term cooperation.

Speaking in the second session of the roundtable on ‘connectivity cooperation for interconnected development’, the premier said Pakistan is pursuing vision of a peaceful, inter-connected and prosperous neighbourhood with great determination.

“Rapid digitalisation and next generation connectivity are at the heart of our agenda for transforming into a knowledge-based economy,” he said.

The prime minister was of the view that CPEC is creating new supply and logistic chains, as well as manufacturing networks. “It has infused Pakistan’s economy with new vitality and dynamism.”

He said Gwadar Port, which is the pivot of CPEC, will link up East, West and South Asia. It will also reach out to African and European markets.

Core of the “One Belt-One Road” initiative is connectivity and long-term development, especially in developing countries, the premier concluded.

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