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November 8, 2014

Pak-China accords to provide one million jobs

Lahore

November 8, 2014

BEIJING/ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif was accorded a warm welcome when he arrived in Beijing on Friday on a three-day visit to China.

He was greeted by a smartly turned-out contingent of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA). Sources said that the visit would help in ushering in an era of development, prosperity and generating employment opportunities to over one million youth of the country.

During his visit to China, the prime minister will attend the annual meeting of the held there besides holding meetings with the Chinese president and prime minister. During his meetings with Chinese president and prime minister, the premier will discuss regional situation and bilateral relations.

Earlier, before his departure to China, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in a statement said that his China visit was also aimed at ending loadshedding in the country. “I am going to China only to save my people from one extra loadshedding-ridden atrocious summer. “Despite the damage done in the past two months due to political turmoil, we will make up for the loss come what may,” he said.

Pakistan-China economic corridor projects have far reaching consequences for Pakistan’s economy. These projects will be source of employment for over a million youth of Pakistan. Pak-China cooperation will also create business opportunities for local and international efforts”, he said.

The momentous agreements/MOUs will be signed between Pakistan and China today (Saturday) covering 21 mega projects which attract investment of over $46 billion in Pakistan.The historic ceremony will take place in Great Hall, Beijing.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will sign the agreements on behalf of Pakistan. It will be Pakistan’s biggest foreign economic investment agreement in country’s history.The prime minister has termed the agreements as game changer since his visit is viewed as prosperity and power specific. The diplomatic sources

told The News here Friday that the signing of several MoUs reflected depth of bilateral relations between the two countries.

Prime Minister Nawaz would hold bilateral meetings with top Chinese leadership and take part in a dialogue themed “Strengthening Connectivity Partnership” taking place ahead of the APEC Economic Leader’s Summit currently underway in Beijing, in which leaders of Myanmar, Laos, Mongolia, Cambodia, Tajikistan and Bangladesh are also participating.

Chinese President Xi Jinping had to cancel his maiden visit to Pakistan due to the protests and sit-in in Islamabad in September and consequently the country had to endure loss of billions of rupees. In the last three months, Pakistan has endured multiple economic losses due to the sit-ins. Over 21 projects for generating 16,520MW power at an estimated cost of around $33 billion would bring substantial improvement in all the sectors of economy after completion.

The important projects to be completed with the Chinese help include 1320MW Sino-Hydro Resource Project, two 660MW Sahiwal Coal Fired Projects, 2,330MW Engro Thar Coal Fired Project, 1320MW each, Muzaffargarh Coal Power, Rahim Yar Khan, SSRL Thar Coal Projects and Thar Mine Mouth Oracle projects, 1000MW SSRL Thar Coal Block 6, 2640MW Gaddani Power Park Project, 300MW Gwadar Coal, 100MW Quaid-e-Azam Solar Park, 50MW Dawood Wind Farm, 100MW UEP Wind Farm, 50MW Sachal Wind Farm, 50MW Sunnec Wind Farm, 870MW Suki Kinari Hydropower Station,720MW Karot Hydropower Station and others.Energy is vitally important for the economy and this has remained on the top of the prime minister’s agenda, ever since he assumed power in June last year.

Both the countries are set to sign agreements to construct various roads, railway and other infrastructure development projects at an estimated cost of around $4 billion. The prime minister would sign an agreement to construct 440 km KKH II Raikot-Islamabad section, Karachi-Lahore Motorway, Havelian Dry Port, Orange Line Project of Lahore, Cross Border Optical Fiber Cable and Hari-Ruba Economic Zone, Sino hydro Resource Limited and Al Mirqab Capital. With Chinese investment, the country’s economy is set to take off and flourish generating numerous employment opportunities for the people of Pakistan, especially the youth.

Prime Minister’s small entourage comprised Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif, federal ministers Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Professor Ahsan Iqbal, Khwaja Muhammad Asif and Special Assistant to PM Syed Tariq Fatemi. Prime Minister Nawaz has travelled by his 12-seat small plane and likely to return tomorrow (Sunday) evening. The visit has unprecedented significance but Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has made it free of any fanfare. The sources vowed that it would be glorious day in Pakistan-China ties history and remembered for the exceptional agreements.