,

CPEC is about development, not property speculation

Source: Asia Times

Date: 29/1/2019

Author: Zamir Awan

Experts anticipate next CPEC phase to bring more benefits

Source: The Nation

Date: 31/1/2019

SARGODHA-The next phase of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will be more beneficial for both China and Pakistan in terms of macroeconomic achievements and strengthening of energy sector.

US has been sympathetic for the CPEC long before the idea was hatched and called China privately to give economic input in Pakistan, but could not openly support the flagship project of Belt and Road Initiative especially under Trump’s reign due to the competition dynamism.

This was said by Andrew Small, Senior Transatlantic Fellow with the German Marshall Fund’s Asia Program during his special lecture on “Future Directions in Chinese Foreign Policy” at the University of Sargodha on Wednesday.

The lecture, organized by Pakistan Institute of China Studies (PICS), was attended by UoS Vice Chancellor Dr Ishtiaq Ahmad, Director PICS Dr Fazalur Rahman, In-charge School of Politics and International Relations Dr Azam, senior faculty members and students of various departments of Social Sciences.

In his welcome address, Dr Fazalur Rahman said that since China is a great power with consistent economic rise for decades, its foreign policy and strategic thinking are highly influential.

“The Chinese foreign policy is pro-peace and pro-development with a special focus on economic cooperation and excellent relations with neighbouring countries.

Other features of this policy are accessing major parts of the globe including Europe and Africa and playing key role in global economic order,” said the Director.

Speaking about the context of US-China relations, Andrew Small remarked that premise of the US-China relations changed over the time dramatically, starting from Kissinger’s secret visit to Beijing. It was largely founded on anti-soviet premises with the US looking to enlist Chinese support against the Soviets and get help for getting out from Vietnam but the views was to bolstering Chinese capacity and overstretch the Soviet Union in its main theatre Europe.

, ,

CPEC to bring prosperity, says PM Imran

Source: The Express Tribune

Date: 26/1/2019

Author: Mohammad Zafar

QUETTA.: 

Prime Minister Imran Khan has said the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project will bring prosperity for the people of Balochistan, vowing mega-development project in the future.

Talking to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Balochistan chapter President Sardar Yar Muhammad Rind in Islamabad on Friday, the prime minister said the PTI-led government will rectify the injustice committed with the resource-rich but impoverished province during previous regimes.

PM Imran said: “People of Balochistan are more patriotic as people of other provinces, without justice the country can’t be developed and our government is serious to develop Balochistan”.

In the meeting, the provincial political situation, Kachi Canal Project and the party’s affairs were discussed. The prime minister also lauded the performance of PTI’s provincial leadership

,

Can solar diplomacy green the Belt and Road?

Source: ChinaDialogue

Date: 29/1/2019

China has pledged to fill the global infrastructure development gap with more than US$4 trillion in “sustainable” projects through its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). But China is not delivering on its promises of green and low carbon infrastructure so the initiative is facing a crisis of legitimacy.

According to a recent report from the World Resources Institute, about 75% of the US$145 billion in loans from China’s major financing institutions went to fossil fuel energy projects, including US$10 billion for coal plants. The report also outlined how almost all investments in the construction of fossil-fuel power were state-owned enterprises. In contrast, private Chinese companies, which have much smaller investment footprints, have focused on solar and wind.

Looking at mainland Southeast Asia, from which many of the examples below are drawn, I observe that China’s BRI power sector investments in Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Myanmar, and Laos total at least 83 gigawatts. This includes over 8 gigawatts of coal projects and a whopping 65 gigawatts of hydropower dams across 137 projects in Myanmar, Cambodia, and Laos.

It’s well established that coal power is bad for the climate and local air quality. There is also no shortage of studies that show how hydropower overdevelopment in the Mekong, Salween, and Irrawaddy river basins will irreversibly damage their ecology. This is putting the livelihoods and economic base of more than one-hundred million people in Southeast Asia at risk. Yet China continues to build.
Tyler Harlan, a postdoctoral fellow at Cornell University’s Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future claims that solar and wind are unattractive investments for many Chinese companies in countries such as Laos and Myanmar. He blames the absence of stable policy frameworks, challenges with integrating renewables into the grid, and risks associated with long-term power purchasing.

“Hydropower continues to dominate power planning because of the influence of Chinese hydro state-owned enterprises and because it is perceived as a reliable baseload electricity source that can be exported to accumulate foreign exchange,” he said.

Continued investment in coal and hydro at current levels could destabilise mainland Southeast Asia, and partially or entirely offset China’s efforts to reduce emissions at home by exporting them abroad.

Solar champion

China has developed a robust domestic solar sector that could easily deliver a sustainable transition in Belt and Road countries. It has moved quickly in the past ten years to lead the world in solar power with at least 165 gigawatts across solar farms and distributed generation.

China still derives 60% of its power from coal but solar is increasingly competitive. In December, a 500 megawatt solar farm in western China started selling power at .316 yuan per kilowatt hour (~5 cents), beating the country’s benchmark price for coal power for the first time.

China has already exceeded its 2020 solar target by more than 50%. This massive expansion was helped over the past decade by creative and flexible policy guidance, government subsidies for investment, successful R&D programmes, and a government consensus to significantly curb carbon emissions.

The experiences of government agencies, research institutions, and investors form a valuable toolbox that should be exported to rapidly developing BRI countries where a transition to renewable energy is pressingly required. The WRI report found that 31 Belt and Road countries needed about US$235 billion in investments to meet their emissions reduction commitments under the Paris Agreement.

Packaging solar diplomacy

Chinese solar diplomacy could help countries with a lot more than project financing. Solar is commercially competitive in Thailand and Vietnam but energy sector officials and utility operators there often complain that intermittent power is difficult to manage on national grids. Like China, these countries have encouraged investment only to find deployment quickly outpace planning targets. For instance, in 2015 Thailand achieved 50% of its intended 2036 solar target of six gigawatts just a few years after setting it. Vietnam has 20 gigawatts of solar investments registered in its pipeline, which is about half its existing capacity. However, only a minor portion can be absorbed into its grid system due to capacity and distribution limitations.

This is an area where Chinese expertise could help. China has a lot of experience managing the unwieldy expansion of renewables whether it’s adjusting targets on a gradual and flexible basis, changing subsidy structures or reducing power wastage. This shows an ability to deal with the necessary growing pains of a renewable energy transition.

Further, in 2016, China’s National Energy Agency announced a poverty alleviation initiative that provided financial incentives and technical guidance for installing rooftop solar in China’s poorest areas. It allows participating households to sell power back to the grid. The programme aims to help two million households in sixteen provinces earn an extra 3000 yuan per year (US$420) through government subsidies. It will also manage problems related to solar intermittency and structurally optimise the country’s power sector.

Electrification rates in BRI countries such as Cambodia and Myanmar are likely to still be around 50% by 2020 without significant intervention. These countries would benefit from foreign assistance to alleviate poverty through solar rooftops and mini-grids in rural areas. Such programmes would also create opportunities abroad for domestic solar champions such as Suzhou Photovoltaic Technology Co. Ltd (协鑫) which has constructed more than one gigawatt of small-scale solar power plants through China’s poverty alleviation initiative.

China should take responsibility to mitigate carbon intense outcomes outside of its borders

Jennifer Turner, director of the Wilson Center’s China Environment Forum argues that the Chinese government should be more vocal about its rural solar schemes. “These projects not only electrify small communities but also create jobs in installation and maintenance of these small-scale energy projects. These kinds of successes should be interwoven into China’s BRI investments, especially in communities that are displaced by large dams, ports, or roads,” she said.

Chinese developers often build schools, marketplaces, and medical clinics in communities that are resettled due to infrastructure development, but with mixed results. China’s investment in community-level solar could provide a better option if it came with proper technical capacity training for operations and maintenance.

In Laos and Cambodia, resettlement related to infrastructure projects and displacement from economic land concessions are the top driver of internal migration. Providing resettled people with ample access to power will increase access to educational resources for community youth and underpin conditions for rural economic development. It could also help close gaps between rural and urban livelihoods in Belt and Road countries.

Responsibility versus interference

For many developing countries, building a competitive market environment where renewable energy generation reaches price parity with coal requires creative political leadership, physical infrastructure, effective management, and investments in national level transmission and distribution systems.

To date, BRI projects are mostly investments in physical assets such as power generation, highways, railways, and ports. This is what host countries ask for and what China finds easiest to finance given excess domestic capacity. Given China’s aversion to interference in the affairs of other countries, state-owned enterprises or government agencies might be reluctant to get too involved in transformative planning processes for another country’s power sector or the sharing of best practices related to policy incentives for a transition to solar and wind.

But according to the recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, a technological transition, the scale and speed of which is comparable to the US domestic mobilisation for World War II, is required to prevent a 1.5C rise in global temperature. Countries in mainland Southeast Asia are among the most vulnerable to climate risk. Locking these countries into a carbon intensive future will exacerbate future vulnerability. Given such urgency, China should take responsibility to mitigate carbon intense outcomes outside of its borders and build resiliency within the most vulnerable regions of the world.

A win-win solution

A programme of Chinese solar diplomacy in the context of the BRI would demonstrate to the world China’s intentions to become an ecological civilisation. So far, China has prioritised BRI countries with plans for significant coal expansion and those where free-flowing rivers provide critical natural resources. Chinese solar diplomacy could accelerate the expansion of solar capacity and create conditions for forward looking power systems which could integrate wind, biomass, and other forms of intermittent energy.

An effective solar diplomacy, if implemented, would greatly improve China’s position as a climate leader at a time when global carbon emissions are ticking upwards again, and potentially spur other actors to create a virtuous race toward a 1.5C future. Big lenders such as the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank would likely be keen to partner with China on such efforts, building on previous pledges to find ways to co-finance projects with China’s Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and other development agencies. Such a move would raise global confidence in the BRI as a force for sustainable development and help make good on China’s pledge to be a responsible global power.

, ,

Pakistan, China to observe 2019 as year of industrial cooperation, says Ambassador Yao Jing

Source: Pakistan Today

Date: 28/12019

Author: Mian Abrar

ISLAMABAD: Chinese Ambassador Mr Yao Jing has said China and Pakistan would observe the year 2019 as a year of industrial, socioeconomic and agriculture cooperation which would take the Sino-Pakistan friendship to the next level.

He expressed these views while addressing the participants of reception to commemorate the new Chinese lunar year hosted by Chinese embassy here to honour the services of Pakistan, China Alumni.

The Chinese ambassador said that both the countries would expedite projects by promoting joint ventures and export-led growth under CPEC this year.

Referring to the decisions taken at the Joint Working Group meeting, the ambassador said all deliverables were achieved at the meeting and the scope of the cooperation was expanded to new avenues.

He said that the MoU on Industrial Cooperation signed during 8th JCC provides a framework to promote communication across key industries such as textile, petrochemical and iron and steel, thereby encouraging Chinese investors to relocate and explore opportunities of investment in Pakistan.

He said that the Ministry of Interior has been doing wonders for the security of Chinese nationals working on the China, Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Addressing on the occasion, Zamir Ahmed Awan said that there are 28,000 Pakistani students studying in China while 20,000 engineers have already graduated from various Chinese institutions.

“We need to involve our engineers graduated from China in CPEC projects. They better understand the cultural strengths and norms of both countries. They can better serve the CPEC projects. We will request the government of Pakistan to involve Pakistani scholars with CPEC projects,” he added.

Awan said it was a pity that there are almost negligible percentage of Chinese-Pakistani scholars working on CPEC projects. “We need to enhance the number of our scholars who have graduated from Chinese institutions. This would help take Sino-Pakistan cooperation to the next level,” he concluded.

On the occasion, various Chinese companies held several lucky draws and guests were given away gifts to make New Year celebrations memorable.

CPEC will continue fueling growth of Pakistan’s construction industry over next decade: Fitch Solutions

Source: Profit Pakistan

Date: 28/1/2019

LAHORE: A report released by Fitch Solutions on Monday said improved transparency regarding China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will continue fueling the growth of Pakistan’s construction industry over the course of the next decade.

The research agency highlighted that since the execution of CPEC in 2013, the megaproject has various challenges emanating in huge downside risks to many projects.

Notwithstanding, these challenges eleven CPEC project termed as early harvest projects have been finished so far, said the report.

It said despite major media and political scrutiny regarding CPEC, this progress on projects highlights Beijing’s improving track record in project execution and its dedication towards infrastructure development in Pakistan.

According to Fitch Solutions, CPEC projects have exhibited good progress in terms of implementation; since a total of 3,240MW of capacity had been added to the country’s national grid, constituting for over 11% of total installed capacity in Pakistan.

Additionally, the research agency highlighted the 392-kilometre Multan to Sukkur section of the Peshawar-Karachi motorway, a key CPEC project is over 80% complete and is slated to finish by August this year.

Fitch Solutions believes continuing Chinese involvement in the country’s construction market will be positive in the shape of timeliness and implementation and will continue to enhance the growth of the construction industry in the near future.

Talking about the debt related concerns to CPEC projects, the research agency said they will start to decrease on the back of improving transparency.

It highlighted a media report published in December 2018 pertaining to Pakistan’s governments’ debt to China purportedly given to be in the region of $40 billion

In response to this, Pakistan’s Ministry of Planning, Development and Reform followed by the Chinese embassy in Islamabad released statements clarifying the total value of the above-mentioned 22 early harvest projects finished and under construction to be around $18.9 billion, said Fitch Solutions.

Moreover, $6 billion of loan which accounted for 32% of total value were provided by the Chinese government and will be repaid over 20-25 years from 2021 at an interest rate of around 2%, said the report.

As per its assessment of the Chinese embassy and Ministry of Planning statements, Fitch Solutions said it observed an improvement in terms of transparency of CPEC projects considering China also shared a breakdown of the type of financing and the projected investment for each project.

It noted this was a welcoming sign for the country’s construction industry as demands for greater transparency over CPEC projects are now being addressed by authorities.

Also, the research agency feels this would provide assurance for potential investors in the country’s construction industry.

It said the improved transparency regarding CPEC projects will aid Pakistan’s efforts in the renegotiation of an IMF bailout, which if sanctioned could provide its struggling economy with much required economic relief.

As per the research agency projection, the real growth of Pakistan’s construction will average at 8.9% over the next five years.

Fitch Solutions indicated it would revise their projections to include possible positive ripple effects across the economy, including the construction industry, in the event an IMF bailout is secured.

Furthermore, it shared that political risks linked with CPEC projects have decreased.

“Previously, we note that the transition in power from Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) posed a downside risk to the Pakistani construction industry as new Prime Minister Imran Khan pledged to review Chinese backed projects, which could potentially have led to project delays and cancellations,” said Fitch Solutions.

But it said the political situation in Pakistan since then had stabilized and Prime Minister Imran Khan has shown an inclination to cooperate with China on various issues including CPEC.

It concluded that the downside risks arising from political uncertainty were falling and bilateral project lead by CPEC will get a boost in terms of policy implementation and project continuity.

 

CPEC to play pivotal role in bringing peace in region: Tehmina

Source: Radio Pakistan

Date: 24/1/2019

Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua has said that China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project is adding a strong dimension to the all weather friendship ties between Pakistan and China.

Addressing the launching ceremony of the China Pakistan Study Center’s magazine PIVOT in Islamabad, she said CPEC will play an important role in connecting and bringing peace in the entire region.

Tehmina Janjua said it is need of the hour to enable the young generation to carry forward the legacy of Pak-China friendship as China is Pakistan’s time tested friend.

She said Pakistan wants to give the world the message of peaceful development and it is working hard to pursue that objective.

The Foreign Secretary said the China Pakistan Study Center is fulfilling the essential requirement of bringing the relationship to the forefront.

In his address Director China Pakistan Study Center, Dr. Talat Shabbir said that Pakistan and China are strategic cooperative partners with their bilateral relationship standing the test of time and history.

He stressed the need to promote better understanding of the vision of the two countries, focusing on all-inclusive facets of Pakistan-China relations.

,

Four key areas under CPEC prioritised

Source: The Dawn

Date: 19th January 2019

Author: Khaleeq Kiani

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday prioritised four key areas under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) for the next couple of years and ordered the groundbreaking of at least three special economic zones (SEZs) before end-June this year.

He was presiding over a meeting here to review progress on the CPEC.

Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtyar briefed the participants on the outcome of the 8th CPEC Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) meeting and progress on the projects.

The prime minister gave targets for short- to mid-term phases, focusing on cooperation in industrial, socio-economic, agriculture and Gwadar. “It was decided to make the period as a phase of industrial cooperation, socioeconomic and agriculture sector development. Timelines for the development of prioritised SEZs were finalised to ensure groundbreaking in first half of 2019,” an official statement said.

PM orders groundbreaking of three special economic zones by end of June

The meeting was told that four SEZs — Rashaki in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Dhabeji in Sindh and M-3 Faisalabad and one in Islamabad — had been planned for development in the first phase and three of them — Rashakai, Dhabeji and Faisalabad — would be ready for groundbreaking by June this year, starting with Rashakai in two to three months. However, IT SEZ in Islamabad would take more time for various reasons including but not limited to selection of its site and then land acquisition process.

The prime minister directed to make full use of upcoming visits of Chinese investors by explaining to them Pakistan’s tax policies and available facilities and speedy processing of business proposals to market SEZs aligned with its development. He desired that ease of doing business should be improved immediately so as these could be shared with the Chinese business delegations. He “directed that a timeline-based policy on provision of utilities to SEZs be prepared at the earliest”. The prime minister directed the Board of Investment’s chairman to present comprehensive recommendations within four weeks on speedy development of SEZs.

The prime minister was informed that the meeting of the newly created Joint Working Group (JWG) on agriculture would meet on Feb 15 in Beijing. It was reported that the Chinese officials had raised questions over Pakistan’s agriculture and the country’s experts wondered why an agro-based economy did not have consistent crop patterns and output predictabilities.

The prime minister directed the relevant agencies and ministries to finalise a well researched agriculture sector road map before going to the JWG meeting next month. “Don’t go unprepared” to the JWG, an official quoted the prime minister as saying.

Mr Khan directed that Pakistan side should finalise the road map for promoting agriculture sector, inviting Chinese companies to explore investment opportunities in Pakistan and leverage agro value chains.

The meeting decided to promote joint ventures in petrochemicals, iron & steel, food and agriculture. On the recommendations of the Planning Commission, the prime minister approved formation of a CPEC Business Advisory Council consisting of leading Pakistani business executives, heads of financial institutions and representatives of business chambers to create an interface with the private sector.

Mr Khan directed that that development of the corridor should continue with the priority to the development of its western route. He emphasised that infrastructure development needed a policy of pragmatism and due financial diligence and not on political considerations.

In the same spirit, a high-level committee, comprising ministers for planning, railways and finance, was formed to finalise modalities on Pakistan Railways ML-1 — the strategic project of the CPEC.

Informed sources said that some ministries had reservations over the Chinese financial and cost modelling of $8.2 billion ML-1 project — Karachi to Torkham border — and wanted some changes.

In the last month JCC meeting, the two sides had nevertheless agreed that “the project should be implemented in line with the Framework Agreement signed in May 2017”.

The prime minister directed that the development of Gwadar should be planned as a smart port city to make it a transhipment and petrochemical hub. He called upon the participants to further expedite progress on various projects under the CPEC because their early completion would bring huge socio-economic opportunities to people.

PM Khan made it clear that early completion of the CPEC projects was in Pakistan’s interest. He said Pakistan could greatly benefit from Chinese experience of bringing its people out of poverty traps and desired that poverty alleviation programmes should be based on multi-pronged schemes because BISP-like programmes could not go on forever.

The meeting that lasted about two hours reviewed overall progress on the CPEC, particularly in the areas of industrial development, — SEZs, ML-1 project, agriculture development, socio-economic development, infrastructure development and Gwadar development.

, , ,

Russia’s Interest In Pakistani Power Projects Could Portend CPEC Investments

Source: EurasiaFuture

Date: 17/1/2019

Author: Andrew Korybko

Reports are circulating in the Pakistani press that the Russian company is interested in several power projects in the country, which could pave the way for Moscow to unofficially invest in CPEC without angering its Indian partners.

Many Pakistanis are excited by the news that Russian company Inter RAO Engineer is interested in several power projects in the country, potentially willing to commit the whopping sum of $2 billion worth of investments if their counterparts are receptive. While nothing has been officially confirmed, these reports are plausible enough given the fast-moving rapprochement between Russia and Pakistan over the past couple of years, which aims to establish a strategic partnership that the author coined with the catchphrase of “Rusi-Pakistani Yaar Yaar”.

It evidently appears as though Russia is diversifying its outreaches with Pakistan from their former Afghan-related anti-terrorist centricity to a more robust partnership that’s now taking on important energy dimensions. It shouldn’t be forgotten that Russia already committed to building the North-South gas pipeline and signed a memorandum of understanding for constructing a $10 billion offshore one between Iran, Pakistan, and possibly even India too one day. In a sense, it can be said that Russia’s “traditional diplomacy” with Pakistan evolved to “military diplomacy” and now “energy diplomacy”.

Attention should be paid to the latest report’s claims about how Inter RAO Engineering is supposedly interested in the proposed Mohmand Dam along the Swat River in the former mountainous Afghan-bordering region of what used to be called the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) prior to its merger with Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa last year. This is highly symbolic because the words “FATA” and “Swat” remind many Westerners of the country’s War on Terror during the mid-2000s, so it says a lot about the overall sub-region’s newfound stability that Russia would consider investing there.

Importantly, $2 billion worth of potential investments in Pakistan’s power industry would signal that Russia wants to get in on the country’s CPEC-related Chinese-driven construction boom but is doing so without openly attaching itself to the CPEC “brand” out of concern for its Indian partner’s political sensitivities. New Delhi is dead-set against CPEC because of its stance that the series of megaprojects transit through territory that India claims as its own per its maximalist approach to the Kashmir Conflict, and the renaissance of relations between it and Russia would be ruined if Moscow invested in CPEC.

That explains why Russia might reportedly be considering investing in CPEC without formally doing so, following the strategy that the author previously suggested in his piece last summer about “Creative Non-CPEC Marketing Strategies For Pakistan”. So long as Russia abstains from officially endorsing CPEC and attaching its investments to that “brand”, then its relations with India won’t suffer no matter how many billions of dollars it eventually pours into Pakistani projects. With that being the case, the latest reports are an encouraging sign of Russian intent and could portend more unofficial CPEC investments.

DISCLAIMER: The author writes for this publication in a private capacity which is unrepresentative of anyone or any organization except for his own personal views. Nothing written by the author should ever be conflated with the editorial views or official positions of any other media outlet or institution.

,

‘CPEC economic zones will help bridge trade deficit of $9b’

Source: The Express Tribune

Date: 20 -1- 2019

LAHORE: Planning and Development Minister Khusro Bakhtiar on Sunday said that Pakistan facing a trade deficit of $9 billion.

He said the deficit would reduce with the economic zones being set up after the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) becomes operational.

The economic zones would help increase exports, which would in turn decrease the trade deficit, he said while talking to the media persons at the Press Information Department regional office

The minister maintained that 19 per cent reduction in the trade deficit was recorded last month because the volume of exports had jacked up and that of imports receded.

He said China and Pakistan would also start working jointly on the agriculture sector in next month.

China, he said, would also provide $1 billion grant to Pakistan in next three years, while around 100 Chinese investors would soon visit the country to explore investment opportunities in various sectors.

Khusro said Pakistan and China had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on industrial cooperation on December 20, 2018.

The PTI-led government, he said, had decided to take CPEC into a new phase by widening its scope. Prime Minister Imran Khan’s visit to China was focused on strengthening of Pakistan’s economy, he added.

He told that the government was also taking effective measures to reduce the current account deficit, besides prioritising facilitation to the export-oriented industries.

The minister said initially the agriculture sector was not included in CPEC. However, the incumbent government convinced China to also extend its cooperation in the vital sector.

“China has a share of $7 billion in the global trade of agriculture and livestock, and $3 billion in fisheries, but Pakistan has none in the two sectors”, remarked Khusro.

Pakistan, with the cooperation of China, was working on elimination of poverty as latter had successfully pulled 700 million people out of poverty.

A pilot project on the Chinese pattern would be initiated, which definitely would help to reduce poverty substantially, he hoped.

To a question, he said Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates had shown keen interest in the establishment of an oil city in Gwadar.