Virtual University Of Pakistan Network
The China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (Chinese: 中国-巴基斯坦经济走廊; Urdu: پاكستان-چین اقتصادی راہداری; also known as CPEC and North-South economic corridor) is an economic corridor comprising a collection of projects currently under construction at a cost of $54 billion. CPEC aims to facilitate trade along an overland route that connects Kashgar and Gwadar, through the construction of a network of highways, railways, optical fiber and pipelines.
The corridor is intended to rapidly expand and upgrade Pakistani infrastructure, as well as deepen and broaden economic links between Pakistan and the People's Republic of China.[ It is considered to be an extension of China's ambitious One Belt, One Road initiative, and the importance of CPEC to China is reflected by its inclusion as part of China's 13th five-year development plan.
Pakistani officials predict that the project will result in the creation of upwards of 700,000 direct jobs between 2015–2030, and add 2 to 2.5 percentage points to the country's annual economic growth. Were all the planned projects to be implemented, the value of those projects would be equal to all foreign direct investment in Pakistan since 1970, and would be equivalent to 17% of Pakistan's 2015 gross domestic product.
Infrastructure projects under the aegis of CPEC will span the length and breadth of Pakistan, and will eventually link the city of Gwadar in southwestern Pakistan to China's northwestern autonomous region of Xinjiang via a vast network of highways and railways. Proposed infrastructure projects are worth approximately $11 billion, and will be financed by heavily-subsidized concessionary loans that will be dispersed to the Government of Pakistan by the Exim Bank of China, China Development Bank, and the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China. As part of the broad package of infrastructure projects under CPEC, a 1,100 kilometre long motorway will be constructed between the cities of Karachi and Lahore, while the Karakoram Highway between Rawalpindi and the Chinese border will be completely reconstructed and overhauled. The Karachi–Peshawar main railway line will also be upgraded to allow for train travel at up to 160 kilometres per hour by December 2019. Pakistan's railway network will also be extended to eventually connect to China's Southern Xinjiang Railway in Kashgar A network of pipelines to transport liquefied natural gas and oil will also be laid as part of the project, including a $2.5 billion pipeline between Gwadar and Nawabshah to eventually transport gas from Iran
Over $33 billion worth of energy infrastructure are to be constructed by private consortia to help alleviate Pakistan's chronic energy shortages, which regularly amount to over 4,500MW,and have shed an estimated 2–2.5% off Pakistan's annual gross domestic product. Over 10,400MW of energy generating capacity is to be developed between 2018 and 2020 as part of the corridor's fast-tracked "Early Harvest" projects in conjunction with four projects under construction prior to the announcement of CPEC.Electricity from these projects will primarily be generated by coal, though wind projects are included under CPEC, as is the construction of one of the world's largest solar energy plants.[
On 13 November 2016 the first trade activity took place through CPEC. Cargo from China was trucked down via the corridor and loaded on to ships at Gwadar port, headed to markets in West Asia and Africa. In November 2016, China announced an additional $8.5 billion investment in Pakistan with $4.5 billion allocated to upgrade Pakistan's main railway line from Karachi to Peshawar including tracks, speed and signalling. And $4 billion toward an LNG terminal and transmission lines to help alleviate energy shortages, taking the total level of investment to $55 billion.
China stands to gain an alternative route for trade rather than the South China sea, with shorter distance saving transport costs (distance will be reduced by 9000 km) and less uncertainty and risk (Pakistan is allied with China) whereas in South-east Asia China is in dispute with its neighbours. Pakistan stands to gain due to upgrade of infrastructure on the Lahore-Karachi railway helping to make exports more competitive in terms of travel time and transport costs and the development of the Pakistan's road, air and port infrastructure to transport goods and will remove the energy shortages which will lead to complete industrialistion of Pakistan's economy from the current semi-industrialised economy, around 8000 Megawatts of energy will be generated.
Pakistan Navy and Chinese Navy ships are to jointly guard the safety and security of the trade corridor, as Pakistan seeks to expand the role of its maritime forces. From December 2016, Pakistan's Navy established a special taskforce "TF-88" to ensure there is maritime security for trade. Chairman Parliamentary Committee on CPEC confirmed that Sindh will deploy 2000 police officers and Punjab will deploy 5000 police officers and the army will deploy 12,000 troops to protect CPEC land route.
As part of CPEC, Pakistan has boosted its international engagement in terms of foreign policy with China, Iran, USA, Turkey and Malaysia are to be engaged for the maritime economy related to CPEC.Iranian President Rouhani revealed his intentions to Pakistan to join CPEC in a meeting at the UN. Russia has also expressed support for CPEC.