Tag: CPEC

Webinar “CPEC at the new Cross Roads”

Webinar “CPEC at the new Cross Roads”

On Monday, June 1st, Islamabad Institute of Conflict Resolution (IICR) organized a closed webinar titled as “CPEC at the new Cross Roads”.  The webinar was part of IICR exclusive initiative Globe 2020, which is aimed at exploring the upcoming major challenges to the Globe. The first Chapter was organized in collaboration with Power China and Sichuan University’s Pakistan Study Center.

The diverse panel included experienced professionals who enlightened with their expertise. Panellists included Prof. Dr. Song Zhihui  Director, Pakistan Study Center, Sichuan University, Dr. Xiu Guangmin vice director of the Pakistan Study Center in Sichuan University, Mr. Ling Jianke is Executive Representative of Power China Pakistan Branch, Senior Engineer, from Pakistan side panelists include Prof. Dr. Rifaat Hussain Analyst, Professor Department of Government Policy and Public Administration at NUST, Maj. Gen. Raza Muhammad®, Chairman IICR, and Ms. Sabah Aslam, the Founder and Executive Director of IICR.

Chairman IICR, Maj. Gen. Raza Muhammad ® moderated the session.

Dr Xiu highlighted the significance of extremism as a hindrance in the growth of CPEC. He pointed out that Pakistan’s government was unable to impose a strict lock-down causing the downturn in recovery. He also pointed out that the government of Pakistan is, at present, not taking enough measures to promote CPEC at the front. Moreover, he shared his concerns over lock-down.

Mr Ling shared his experience about how CPEC is progressing during Covid-19. He expressed that Pak-China Cooperation will continue to grow during and after Covid-19. He also stated that the scope of CPEC should be enlarged to include more sectors in it.

Prof. Dr. Song emphasized the role of think-tanks and research units to curtail the negative propaganda often orchestrated by western media. He believed that reality-based research and discourse shall be produced and dispersed by such intellectual realms to smoothen the flow of CPEC during Covid-19.

Ms. Sabah shed light on Security Challenges to CPEC & Balochistan. She emphasized that rather than defying any security challenges, both countries need to accept the severe security threats to CPEC and shall overcome this hindrance through cooperation.

Prof. Dr. Rifaat enlightened us about the Afghan factor in CPEC. “There should not be any doubt that the solution to Afghanistan is only through dialogue”, Dr Rifaat said. He also highlighted that the withdrawal will cause a vacuum which needed to be filled through international consensus. While talking on Pakistan, China and Afghanistan, he added that the trio shall consider creating a cooperative security framework which can help in bringing peace and stability in Afghanistan.

At the end Chairman IICR, Maj. Gen. Raza Muhammad® concluded the session with the hope that Paki-China cooperation and CPEC will prosper no matter what hindrance it faces.

Interactive Session with Mr. Zhao Lijian (China Emb. DHM)

Interactive Session with Mr. Zhao Lijian (China Emb. DHM)

Islamabad Institute of Conflict Resolution (IICR) hosted an in-house interactive session with delegation from Chinese embassy. Delegation was headed by Mr. Zhao Lijian. IICR’s Chief Executive gave the welcomed remarks and extended her gratitude to Mr. Zhao and Chinese Embassy. Later Mr. Zhao Lijian addressed the audience and shed insight to the CPEC progress. He said that as the second phase of CPEC has started it now focuses on few sectors, the infrastructure and development where he pointed out that the provincial and federal government should introduce subsidizing polices to attract the investors at special economic zones. Mr. Zhao then said that another aspect which is on the check list is development of social sector under which is one of prime aspect of CPEC. He added that under social development Chinese government has launched pilot project for poverty elevation through which significant growth will be seen in the socio-economic fabric of Pakistan. H.E Mr. Zhao expressed that there are also special focus on agriculture on which Chinese government is willing to help Pakistan with its expertise and technology.
Chinese DHM to Pakistan Mr. Zhao also said that CPEC and BRI are inclusive projects and open for all and it welcomes third party participation. He further added that by the end of this month one of the mile stones will be achieved with the completion of power plant at Thar of capacity of 660MW. He also anticipated that another Balochistan power plant will be completed by the end of August of 2019.
Commenting on trade war between Beijing and Washington Mr. Zhao said that China has no intention to engage its potential and energy on any sort of war with the United States despite it wants to normalize the tensions since both have interest in it. He also said that both the countries are interdependent on each other.
Attitude of the United States seems non-serious towards this problem since they are bullying Beijing through its rigid and non-serious attitude, he added.
Session was concluded by the Chairman, Islamabad Institute of Conflict Resolution Maj.Gen Raza Muhammad. He thanked Mr. Zhao for delivering an interesting and truly comprehensive session, he also said that the people of Pakistan and the government of Pakistan wants to see CPEC successful. He further added that government of Pakistan and people of Pakistan thanks China for its support in difficult times.
Session was then followed by a lunch.

CPEC: A Way Forward

CPEC: A Way Forward

Islamabad Institute of Conflict Resolution (IICR) held a conference on April 2nd, 2019 at the Serena Hotel, Islamabad.
The Inaugural Session was opened by the Executive Director of IICR Ms. Sabah Aslam, after recitation of Holy Quran. She highlighted the bond of respect shared by both the states. She mentioned that CPEC is a project which aims not just the economy of Pakistan but the people-people contact between the two great nations of the world. The conference aimed at highlighting what the future holds for both Pakistan and China after CPEC.
After this, the Keynote Speaker, H.E Mr. Zhao Lijian who is the DCM and Minister
Counsellor to the Embassy of China addressed the guests. Beginning with addressing the Chief Guest Senator Rehman, he also congratulated Pakistan on the success of CPEC. He claimed that he will make a few observations and began by reiterating that just like in China, there is a broader national consensus in Pakistan regarding CPEC. He also pointed out that this project began during the era of President Zardari and to this day this plan has been going on.
Mr. Lijian talked about the long term benefits for people on both sides and the major areas in which CPEC operates i.e. economy, energy and infrastructure. He further elaborated that after the success of the first phase, CPEC is moving towards its second phase. He also highlighted that there is also going to be a major focus on the railway up-gradation that will take around 6 years to complete.
Further he added that Gwadar holds a special position for CPEC and because of this, currently we are working on the International Gwadar Airport through which an easy trade and export of commodities will be achieved. Pakistan and China together are working on creating international schools and hospitals in Gwadar.
He also discussed the 9 SEZs plan and Governor KP’s upcoming visit to Second Beijing Summit. Further the impact on CPEC on the Private Companies and Sector will was said to improve. For example the Haier-Ruba joint venture in Lahore has spread out and has extended to $11 million worth of cooperation. Also, more than 100 projects have been launched for socio-economic development.
He concluded by saying that they are looking for international cooperation in which we will welcome third party cooperation in various energy power plans.
After his address, the Chief Guest Senator Rehman Malik spoke to the guests. He reiterated the importance of friendship between Pakistan and China by referring to history. The senator added that CPEC is developing the infrastructure in many folds. There had been miscommunications which have been directed by the enemies of Pakistan and CPEC. Pakistan and China and their friendship cannot be broken down so easily and this will stand all the tests of time.
The second session started after a teabreak and kcomposed of various papers which were presented by the academic circle.
The first paper was presented by Dr. Talat Shabbir (Director, China-Pakistan Study Centre, ISSI) on China-Pakistan Economic Corridor: A Futuristic Outlook. It discussed CPEC as a set of projects of bilateral economic framework that generates complimentary advantages of cooperation and connectivity leading to prosperity. Pakistan has an opportunity to build or up-grade infrastructure, address energy shortfalls, commence industrialization and revive economy. Early Harvest phase of CPEC is over and most of the project related to energy and infrastructure are either completed or near completion. Future of CPEC however, essentially depends on how we take up the challenge of building it.
The second paper was presented by Maj. Gen. ®Raza Muhammad (Chairman, IICR) on the topic of CPEC: A Harbinger of Societal Emancipation for Pakistan and A Way to Regional Peace and Stability. The gist was that CPEC is a harbinger of societal emancipation that is expected to usher a longer lasting, multifaceted socio-economic progression, not only in Pakistan but the Region as well, thereby helping stabilise the Region that is in a volatile state since 1979. It’s a momentous opportunity that China and Pakistan must make best use of for enhanced economic gains to alleviate people’s sufferings. Direly needed socio economic developments can be speedily made by effective implementation of the concept in letter and spirit.
Dr. Nazir Hussain (Director SPIR, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad) presented the third paper on CPEC: A Cost-Benefit Analysis. The paper discussed that BRI and CPEC are aimed at economic transformation and regional connectivity in the wider Asia in general and South Asia/Pakistan in particular. These initiatives are also to usher pipeline, trade and investment corridors in the regional environment creating positive impact. trade connectivity in trans-regional perspective. Therefore, there is a strong need to look into the CPEC with objectivity and prepare a cost-benefit analysis for a win-win situation for all regional states and key stakeholders.
Finally, the paper on CPEC: Prospects and Challenges was presented by Yasir Masood (Deputy Director Media & Publications, Centre of Excellence CPEC). It reiterated that CPEC is a long-term development project of the two all-weather friendly neighbours namely China and Pakistan. The overall aim of CPEC is to become a “Gateway of Prosperity” for both countries, and the region at large by focusing on trade and marketing access; industrial development and global value chains; socio-economic development & poverty alleviation; agriculture modernization & marketing; Gwadar oil city & blue economy; regional connectivity and third-party participation. This will help enhance the livelihood of the people, especially in the deprived regions of both countries.
The session was then followed by a question and answer slot where participants and guest asked valuable questions to the panellists. The conference ended with the concluding remarks form the Maj. Gen. ®Raza Muhammad (Chairman, IICR) and shield distribution ceremony.
Team IICR