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No compromise on CPEC, says Pak official

Islamabad, May 7 (IANS) The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is a non-political international project and work for its completion is in progress on a fast pace, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information Lt-Gen (retd) Asim Saleem Bajwa has said.

"There is no political hindrance in its way. The project is Pakistan''s future as well as a tangible reality and no compromise will be made on it," Bajwa, who is also the CPEC Authority Chairman, told the media on Wednesday.

Bajwa said Pakistan takes decisions in its interest and there should be no doubt that the CPEC project "is in the best interest of the country", adding that "no external pressure will be accepted", reports The Express Tribune.

He said that the working plan of both the routes from Khunjrab to Gwadar has been completed and the remaining link routes will be added into the plan in the next few months.

"The second phase of this multibillion-dollar project is crucial for the development of the country and construction work will soon be started."

Describing the projects in the second phase of CPEC, Bajwa said: "Special emphasis is on agriculture, industries, trade, and science and technology sectors."

He said that the highest priority was to make functional the economic zones in the four provinces, adding that Gwadar''s development projects were included in the second phase of the CPEC.

He also said that Pak-China Cooperation Committee would soon conduct a conference.

CPEC is a flagship $60 billion project of Chinese President Xi Jinping''s Belt and Road Initiative that aims to connect Asia, Africa and Europe through a vast network of highways, rail lines and sea lanes.

The multi-billion dollar corridor connects the Chinese city of Kashgar with Pakistan''s Gwadar port on the Arabian Sea.

--IANS

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