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We look upon CPEC as a partnership between two govts: Shahid Abbasi

23 April, 2018

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"We look upon CPEC as a partnership between two governments," said Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, who is the chief guest, while addressing the two-day CPEC Summit, being hosted by Dawn Media Group in collaboration with the Ministry of Planning and Development on Monday.. "It is a new form of cooperation."

"Three years ago CPEC was unheard of — today it is known globally. The BRI initiative of Chinese President Xi is a project for generations," he said, "Recently, we discussed security and connectivity with Afghanistan, who also recognises CPEC as an opportunity." "CPEC has now become a reality — two power projects under the initiative have been completed and the third one is about to be finished."

"This event proves that Karachi is changing," he said, adding that when the PML-N came to power in 2013, the city was known for target killings and extortion.

"This is an age of development and growth, with the speed of an electron," he remarked.

Talking about the Belt and Road initiative, he termed it a huge opportunity. "Pakistan will become a hub of development with the help of this project.

"We made regional connectivity a key component of our Vision2025 project," he said, terming CPEC the biggest flagship project of the One Belt One Road initiative. "China extended its hand towards Pakistan when no one wanted to invest even 10 dollars."

Addressing the reservations about CPEC, Iqbal said: "There are lobbies that are not happy with CPEC — it is not a death trap."

"Some say China will become the East India Company; they haven't read history. China seeks partnership. There is nothing to fear for Pakistani businesses [...] this is a propaganda." "Love live China-Pak friendship," Iqbal concluded.

For the past 40 years, China has made every effort to develop and grow its economy, said Chinese Ambassador Yao Jing in his address. "We've combined socialism and market economy to benefit people."

"China wants to see its relationship with Pakistan serve as example for its relations with other states," said Jing while speaking on the CPEC. "We look at CPEC as a significant project. I'm proud that after five years of implementation, it [CPEC] has contributed to Pakistan's development." "CPEC is not just about economic growth; we want to develop a community."

Other prominent guests include Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah and Karachi Mayor Waseem Akhtar.

A symposium, “The dynamics of economy and finance”, preceded the inauguration ceremony. The discussion featured, among others, former State Bank governor Ishrat Husain and former finance ministers Shaukat Tarin and Abdul Hafeez Shaikh.

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