Islamabad: It is claimed that the project of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, valued at more than $100 billion, will have a significant effect on Pakistan’s socio-economic development.
In a recent interview with Sun Chao, the author of Global Leaders on the Belt and Road Initiative, he said the flagship project of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) helps to develop remote areas, create jobs, and improve livelihoods.
There are various projects included in the CPEC, including deep sea ports, roads and railways, solar farms, coal mines, and fiber-optic cable networks.
It is estimated that CPEC is worth $62 billion, equal to 20% of the economy’s current aggregate. Since the CPEC project began in 2006, the value has grown from $46 billion to $62 billion. CPEC has had a significant impact on our country not only economically, but also across a number of other areas.
CPEC has strengthened diplomatic relations between our country and China, and imports have grown since the trade policies were relaxed and the CPEC project began.
Pakistan imports more than half of its electrical appliances, equipment, and machinery from China, along with nuclear power plants, high-tech industrial machinery, steel, silk, and garlic.
In the past, Japanese brands dominated the electronics market, having high quality but high prices. Substitutes for Japanese and German products were provided by Chinese brands at relatively low prices, and China filled this gap by providing substitutes for high-priced Chinese brands.
“The loyalty to brands has been lost, emerging global brands are recognized, especially by more picky consumers and those who use social media,” said Humayoun Bashir, a marketing manager for a Chinese multinational company.
The actual import figures are much higher than those provided by SBP, and many people feel that this wave of cheap imports is bad for local industry.
The volume of Pakistan’s imports from China is second only to that from the United States, and China may be the second largest foreign importer after the United States, but its exports to China only account for 60pc of its imports, and the trade deficit is expected to increase even further.
According to Mohammed Ahmed, owner of a small and medium-sized enterprise in Pakistan, this model of high imports from China creates a new market opportunity for Pakistan’s retail trade.
Real estate values along the CPEC line will rise sharply in suburban and rural areas as a result of the development of transportation infrastructure.
At this historic moment in the relationship between our two countries, it is imperative for both sides to seize this opportunity, build on it, and further strengthen the bilateral ties, creating a community of shared futures between Pakistan and China.
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