Ministry of Planning
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Salient Points of Press Conference

Dated : 13 July 2019

‘The Present Government stands committed to all the agreements and projects underway in CPEC. It accords highest priority to CPEC and considers it a landmark initiative for harnessing the future economic development of Pakistan’. Khusro Bakhtyar

➢ China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Project is manifestation of decades old close relations and strong ties between Pakistan and China.

➢ Due to the endeavors of the incumbent Government, CPEC has now entered into the second phase where now the focus will be laid on industrial and agricultural cooperation, development of Gwadar and socio-economic development. In the second phase, scope of CPEC will be broadened and its pace hastened which will have far reaching results and pave the way for economic development.

➢ To institutionalize and take forward the cooperation, CPEC Secretariat is being transitioned and elevated into an Autonomus Authority under Ministry of Planning, Development & Reform that will provide a much needed platform for;

▪ for multi sectoral coordination
▪ Coordinate efforts for development and implementation of future CPEC plans.

➢ Ministry of Planning will remain the lead Ministry on Pakistan side and NDRC on Chinese side as per the CPEC Bilateral MoU between NDRC between Governments of Pakistan and China.

➢ 9th JCC will be held in October this year where, further progress will be made. Mr. Ning, Vice Chairman NDRC, would visit {Pakistan to participate in the 9th JCC.

➢ All administrative issues pertaining to CPEC projects including Gwadar Port are being addressed on priority basis.

➢ The previous Government did not do anything significant about the development of Gwadar and the incumbent Government soon after coming into power immediately invited all stakeholders to fast track the land usage model and urban design model as well as the governance structure to undertake development of Gwadar city.

➢ Gwadar will be developed on modern lines and in this regard a comprehensive Planning is being made to turn it into a smart port city of international standard. The objective is to enable Gwadar to emerge as the leading trading port in the region.

➢ The Gwadar Master Plan is in final stages of development and I assure you that framework will attract foreign investment manifolds and truly turn Gwadar into a transshipment hub and a smart port city.

➢ China-Pakistan Business Council has been established to be an interface between business communities of the two countries encouraging B2B interaction and accelerate industrial cooperation which will strengthen partnership between investors of two countries that will also benefit the CPEC projects.

➢ Free Trade Agreement-II has already been concluded with China which will further increase exports to the neighbouring country thereby enhancing foreign exchange reserves.

➢ Pakistan is the first recipient of $1 billion grant from Chinese institution, CIDCA, for socio-economic Development projects which is reflective of strong partnership between the two countries. The work on these projects will commence shortly.

➢ Under the socio-economic development grant, 4000 household solar generator units have already reached Pakistan which will be distributed in different areas of Balochistan including Gwadar

➢ Moreover, the potential of industrial cooperation between the two countries can be gauged by recent visit of a leading business delegation from the famous western region city of Chingqong, China, who expressed keenness to invest $5 billion in next two to three years in the new SEZ. Six Chinese business and investor delegations have visited Pakistan in the last few months.

➢ The Present Government is committed to early operationalization of SEZs under CPEC and for that purpose a project “Provision of Utilities and Infrastructure Development” worth 18 billion rupees is being developed for which sizable amount has been kept in PSDP.

➢ We need to focus on ML-1 project which will prove to be a backbone for the development of communications infrastructure in the country.

➢ Joint Working Group on Agriculture (JWG) will meet in September this year and following the direction of Prime Minister Imran Khan cooperation in agriculture will be expanded. Co-branding and Co-Marketing of Agriculture products will be initiated and Foot & Mouth Disease Free Zone has been set up in Bahawalpur.

➢ A Chinese agri-experts group will visit Pakistan on 22nd of this month to discuss further developments in six areas of agriculture. They would also visit Foot and Mouth Disease Free Zone in Bahawalpur.