China, Pakistan sign deals to beef up CPEC project
China and Pakistan have signed 20 more agreements worth 1.6 billion dollars to implement the ambitious China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project.
These agreements were signed at the CPEC Forum held at Karamay city in Xinjiang province of China bordering Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK). In this forum both countries also issued the Karamay Manifesto.
About China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project
- 3,000 km strategic CPEC project is brainchild of China and is part of its ambitious six economic corridors conceived under Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road.
- It connects Xinjiang Province of China with Pakistan’s strategic Gwadar Port and passes through PoK.
- It was launched by Chinese President Xi Jinping during his visit to Pakistan in April 2015.
- During this visit, around 51 agreements were signed of which 30 were linked to this strategic corridor.
- Significance: CPEC project seeks to boost economic cooperation, political trust and cultural exchanges between China and Pakistan.
- It is regarded as the biggest connectivity project between the two countries with total investments around 46 billion dollars.
- The project includes building of railways, highways as well as pipelines in order to shorten China’s energy imports route from the Middle East by about 12,000 kms.
- India’s Concern: As it passes through disputed territory of PoK, India has conveyed its objections to China.