By: Qurat ul Ain Aman
The world we live in is not only moving but is also changing with every passing day. It has become a global village today. Given this state of the world, it is impossible for a country to live in isolation. And, that holds true for Pakistan as well. Pakistan’s archrivals, especially India, have log desired to isolate the country internationally and have also put in strenuous efforts in this regard. Pakistan has unstable relations with two of its neighbours, i.e. India and Afghanistan, but our all-weather friend, China, does never disappoint us. It not only defends Pakistan at international fora but also comes to its rescue whenever enemies are out to defame it and get it declared a country that sponsors terrorism.
With its rapid and remarkable economic progress, China is marching on its way to becoming the world’s largest economy and a great, formidable power. One of the major reasons that have added an impetus to this meteoric rise of China is its revolutionary Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). This colossal project is not limited to any one country; it has an overwhelming number of them in its fold. One of the major projects being carried out under the BRI is China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) that offers huge dividends to both China and Pakistan, as well as the countries in the region.
Being a developing country, Pakistan is faced with a plethora of social and economic issues such as shortage of energy, poor infrastructure, low literacy rate, high employment ratio, etc. Timely completion of CPEC will not only strengthen China-Pakistan relations but will also provide a much-needed boost to the economy of our country. Pakistan has been able to grab this opportunity only because of its unique geostrategic location that is no less than a blessing for it. And, it won’t be wrong to assert that CPEC is the best way to get full advantage of this ideal geostrategic location.
Many critics have termed China’s launch of the CPEC as the advent of another East India Company in terms of its objectives and purposes. On the other hand, our enemies, too, have made consistent attempts to stop and sabotage this project. However, the honesty of the Chinese leadership and the strong will and resolve of the Pakistani government have played a major role in materializing this dream.
Before the launch of this game-changer initiative, the Balochistan province of Pakistan was known for poor infrastructure and precarious economic conditions. It is not wrong to say that these were the factors that paved the way for the rise of insurgency in this part of the country. However, the situation has changed a lot and Balochistan is ready to become a hub of trade in this region. This rapid transformation would have not been possible had there been no CPEC. It also needs to be remembered here that beneficial impacts of CPEC are not limited only to Balochistan; rather, the people of every province are getting full advantage of this project in the form of employment opportunities, better health facilities, developed infrastructure and enhanced energy supplies. A clear rise can be seen in the ratio of employment since the beginning of this mega project.
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