CPEC to promote industrial, regional cooperation: Khusro

Planning minister says China offers free access for export of 313 Pakistani items

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OUR CORRESPONDENT
ISLAMABAD
Minister for Planning and Development Khusro Bakhtyar says China will provide one billion dollars grant for socio-economic development in Pakistan. Addressing China-Pakistan Economic Corridor forum here on Friday, he said cooperation in education, health, water, poverty alleviation, and other sectors has been included in socio-economic development. The Minister said industrial and agricultural development will be focused in the next phase of CPEC. He urged the private sector to take lead in industrial development. He said cooperation in the industrial sector will further strengthen the relationship between Pakistan and China. Khusro Bakhtyar said China has offered free access for export of 313 Pakistani items. He said the PTI government wants to increase business opportunities under CPEC; and for the purpose, Pakistan-China Business Forum is being set up. He said memorandum of understanding has been signed with China for establishing foot and mouth disease-free zones. Khusro Bakhtyar said the huge investment was made in the energy sector under CPEC in Pakistan during the last six years. He said in the infrastructure sector, railway network and development of coastal areas, including Gwadar Port, are being given special importance. He said Gwadar Master Plan will give impetus to economic activity in Gwadar. He said Pakistan desires to benefit from Chinese experience in different sectors, including livestock, fishing, and research. The Minister said structural reforms are being introduced in the country. The government is committed to the strengthening of institutions. He said tax net will have to be expanded to increase economic growth. He said measures are being taken to enhance exports. He said the pace of work on Special Economic Zones under ChinaPakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) has been accelerated. He said the government has focused its attention on industrial development under CPEC with an approach to relocate the Chinese industry in Pakistan. He urged the private sector to take lead in industrial development, pointing out that cooperation in the industrial sector will further strengthen the relationship between Pakistan and China. The minister said the government is committed to socio-economic development, particularly in the western parts of Pakistan, under CPEC. He said education, health, and agriculture will be improved. He said in the infrastructure sector, railways network and development of coastal areas, including Gwadar Port, are being given special importance. Federal Minister for Planning, Development & Reform Makhdum Khusro Bakhtyar has said that China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project is now entering into the second phase wherein bilateral cooperation in agriculture and industrial sectors will be enhanced. He stated that cooperation in the industrial sector will further strengthen the bilateral partnership between the two countries.

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