Road to Naya Pakistan and impact on CPEC

With the dawn of a new administration in Pakistan after the general elections of July, 2018 the question on most minds is regarding the future of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). The prime concern is whether ongoing projects will be carried out with peacefully? Will there be any improvement in the CPEC projects and if the investment prospects in Pakistan are still safe and corruption free, will the new government be able to bring peace and prosperity with CPEC as a major constituent in Pakistan’s economic growth.

Historically, since the establishment of Sino-Pakistan diplomatic relations-May 21, 1951, Pakistan has experienced a string of events which shattered its political stability and internal peace. Since then varying manifestos of different political parties have remained constant on one thing alone; that Pakistan and China are all weather friends. This notion rests within the core objectives of Pakistan’s foreign policy, be it civilian or military rule. However, the hopeful and a positive change between the new government and the previous ones is that unlike its predecessors, the new government promises no deviation in CPEC policies. Being a national developmental policy project CPEC will continue its progress as an international agreement.

Continuing with the progress of the projects under CPEC there are also apprehensions about CPEC’s role in economic development under the new political administration. Imran Khan in his speech stated that the new government will play its part to lower the trade deficit and bring trade facilities in Pakistan in terms of business opportunities, CPEC indeed serves as the biggest investment project in the history of Pakistan and holds a great potential to play an effective role in making the naya Pakistan a hub of trade and economic activity.

There seems to be great determination that the CPEC project doesn’t fall prey to the menace of corruption

Moreover, along with trade facilitation the new government also claims to bring the overseas Pakistani investment back in the country. Contextualising Pakistan’s importance as an agrarian economy, the CPEC Long Term Plan (LTP) envisages viable and effective improvements in the textile and garments industry while increasing the supply of high value-added products. With this new vision the overseas investment in the textile, agricultural and chemical industry can be a good option to promote CPEC and increase the foreign exchange of Pakistan.

One of the core agendas of the administration is to bring peace and prosperity. Now the point to ponder is that how long lasting will that peace be? CPEC also focuses on provincial integration to make Pakistan a peaceful society. There are many security concerns to CPEC as well so it is important to focus on the steps the new government is going to take for the security of the CPEC projects so that it will integrate different parts of Pakistan with the aim to achieve economic development, peace, security, and stability.

Last but not the least certain reservations prevail regarding the transparency of CPEC. There are hopes that in the naya Pakistan there will be a corruption free society. There seems to be great determination that the CPEC project doesn’t fall prey to the menace of corruption.

"Monitoring Desk"

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