CPEC volume rises to $62bn

Following the inclusion of new projects including Karachi Circular Railway and others, the investments under China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) have now extended to $62billion. This was revealed by Governor Sindh Muhammad Zubair.

Talking to media on the sidelines of PACRA-DAGONG conference on “Infrastructure Demand and Financing – The road ahead” held at local hotel at Karachi he said that the CPEC investment was initially estimated to US$46billion then it was revised to US$55billion and now it had been extended to US$62billion after inclusion of new projects including industrial zones, Karachi Circular Railway and others.

Sindh Governor said that Pakistan and China now transformed its four-decade long relations into trade relations through CPEC. He was of the view that CPEC was a challenge for Pakistan but not for China and hoped that things related to CPEC would be handled in best professional manner to yield maximum fruits.

He said that the country’s growth rate remained stagnant to 3 per cent during 2008 to 2013 and now it was increased to 4 per cent last year and was expected to reach 5 per cent growth during current year.
Dr. Waqar Masood Khan, former secretary finance said that CPEC was not an economic project but a strategic concept, raising both obvious and imperceptible apprehensions and doubts. He said that the estimated cost of the project was earlier US$46billion, of which, US$11billion was allocated for improving infrastructure – road, railway, airport, etc while rest of US$35 billion was designated for power projects, being financed through Chinese Exim bank and other financial institutions.

Later, the project for rebuilding railway from Karachi to Peshawar was added in CPEC with an investment of US$5billion, he said and adding that there were no special incentives for the projects outside CPEC ambit but these projects including Gwadar-Nawab Shah pipeline, Dasu Dam, 3600MW LNG power projects were being paid equal importance.