Economy

Our country is going through a low point, PM Khan tells China

Our country is going through a low point, PM Khan tells China”

The launch apparently is coinciding with Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan's maiden visit to China starting Friday.

The Prime Minister said CPEC was going in stages including roads, development of Gwadar, which was the second deepest port after Singapore, and some power projects that became part of CPEC.

Yao Jing, China's ambassador to Pakistan, told reporters in Islamabad on October 27 that Pakistan is expected to receive good news from the visit.

Though China is Pakistan's closest ally, Imran's newly elected government has sought to re-think the two countries' signature project, the $60 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which Beijing touts as the flagship infrastructure program in its vast Belt and Road Initiative.

There is no official comment from Beijing yet on the report.

Before travelling to China, PM Khan said that he was striving to obtain financial aid from two unnamed countries after Pakistan secured $6 billion in funding from Saudi Arabia.

In the meeting, the two sides discussed strengthening of bilateral relations and matters of mutual regional and worldwide interests, including the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project.

Khan's visit to China will provide an "opportunity" for the two countries to open a "new chapter" of bilateral relations "under the new circumstances", Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said on Monday.

Haling Pakistan efforts, he said that this country, despite its domestic turmoil and neighbors aggression, always stood through every thick and thin with the helpless people of Jammu and Kashmir.

Finance Minister Asad Umar said this week a bailout was the only option and the government was seeking funds from various sources, including China, to avoid dependence on one country or institution.

$1.5 billion are expected to be deposited in the State Bank of Pakistan, while Pakistan Railways may also be included in the package.

Islamabad's worries were exacerbated when the United States insisted that any bailout funds provided by the International Monetary Fund must not be used to pay off Chinese lenders.

Pakistan and China don't share a border.

Earlier, he hoped PM Imran Khan's first visit of China will open up new vistas of prosperity through expanding its exports to China and attracting more Chinese investment in the country.

China also agreed to address his concern that the CPEC projects were mainly benefitting the dominant Punjab region and the new projects will focus on the western region of Balochistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. Khan will meet with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on Saturday and will attend a massive import expo hosted by Xi in Shanghai next week.

In an interview to the Chinese state-run media ahead of his visit, Khan said the CPEC has given Pakistan a great opportunity to bring in foreign investment and to get out of the hard economic situation it is facing. So, Islamabad's only link to Beijing is through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).



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