‘CPEC is not about roads, motorways; it’s about connectivity,’ says Shahbaz
Karachi: The two-day CPEC Summit, being hosted by Dawn Media Group in collaboration with the Ministry of Planning and Development, kicked off at Karachi’s Bagh-i-Jinnah on Monday.
Punjab Chief Minister (CM) Shahbaz Sharif addressed the summit in the session ‘View from Punjab’. “CPEC has helped strengthen the federation of Pakistan; today, Pakistan is a happening place and CPEC has proven that it is a country where people’s money is safe,” he said.
“CPEC has been a turning point in Pakistan’s history,” he said, adding: “Those who doubt intentions of the Chinese are enemies of Pakistan.”
He negated the impression that CPEC was limited to one area or province, saying, “Together with Sindh, Balochistan, KP, FATA and AJK, we will build a better tomorrow.”
“China is one of Pakistan’s most reliable friends. Once the Chinese were convinced that people of Pakistan rightly deserved their support, then came President Xi’s vision of Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) which came to be known as CPEC,” said Shahbaz.
Praising China’s support further, the Punjab CM said there has been no conditions or mantra of “do more” — a reference to the often repeated demand from the United States — from the neighbouring country.
“CPEC is not about roads and motorways; it’s about connectivity.”
Sindh CM Murad Ali Shah, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa CM Pervez Khattak and Balochistan CM Mir Abdul Quddus Bizenjo, and other speakers are also expected to address the summit.
CPEC is a reality: Shahid Khaqan Abbasi
“We look upon CPEC as a partnership between two governments,” said Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi — the event’s chief guest — at the inauguration of the summit in the morning. “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.”