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CPEC not a security project, says Ahsan

https://nation.com.pk/05-Jan-2018/cpec-not-a-security-project-says-ahsan


January 05, 2018

ISLAMABAD -  Federal Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal Thursday said that no one should consider the China Pakistan Economic Corridor as a security project as it is the project of peace and prosperity of the region.

A lobby is busy spreading disinformation and rumours among the masses against CPEC as they want to sabotage the project , Ahsan Iqbal said this while speaking at the launching ceremony of CPEC Quarterly Magazine and website of the CPEC Centre of Excellence here.

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He said no one should consider the Corridor as a security project . Any country can join the China Pakistan Economic Corridor to ensure peace and development in the region, he said. “Together we can bring change in the lives of people in this part of the world where there is still extreme poverty,” he added.

Ahsan Iqbal said the CPEC is a vision of achieving better quality of life to people of the region who have paid a heavy price of conflicts in the last several decades. He said these conflicts denied us opportunity to exploit full potential of the region.

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The minister said that the CPEC will have a great impact on socio-economic development of the country. He said energy and infrastructure investment is going to take place under the CPECproject . Ahsan Iqbal said that the government has funded Quetta-Gwadar road from its own resources, which has reduced the forty hours distance to eight hours.

He said that 80 per cent of the CPEC investment is in energy sector. The value of Thar coal is more than the value of Saudi and Iranian oil and so far investment of $5 billion has been finalised for the development of Thar coal, Ahsan claimed.

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Speaking on the occasion, Chinese Ambassador Yao Jing said that China Pakistan Economic Corridor is the project of bilateral cooperation between the two countries.

He said that the CPEC is result of joint efforts of Pakistan and China to materialise the goal of sustainable development.

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The ambassador congratulated the CPEC Centre of Excellence over launching of CPEC Quarterly Magazine and website and termed it as a good step towards provision of awareness to the people about updates, opportunities and activities with regard to the CPECproject .

CHINA WELCOMES

CURRENCY SWAP AGREEMENT

INP adds: China has welcomed Pakistan’s move allowing the yuan to be used for imports, exports and financing transactions for bilateral trade and investment activities.

China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said in Beijing on Thursday that bilateral monetary cooperation has been deepening since China and Pakistan signed a bilateral currency swap agreement in 2011.

“At present, various forms of trade and investment cooperation between China and Pakistan have developed in depth,” he added.

Pakistan’s central bank had stated on Tuesday that public and private sector enterprises may use the yuan for bilateral trade and investment.

Answering a question Chinese spokesperson “We encourage market players in both countries to use domestic currency settlement in bilateral trade and investment and welcome Pakistan’s initiatives.”

China believes this will provide a good financial environment for bilateral economic, trade and investment cooperation and the construction of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, he added

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