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CPEC meeting decides to counter challenges on fast-tract basis

CPEC meeting decides to counter challenges on fast-tract basis

ISLAMABAD: A meeting was held to review the progress on China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects on Friday discussed the challenges impeding the development work and decided to counter them on a fast-track basis to ensure timely completion of the projects.

Planning and Develop­ment Minister Makhdum Khusro Bakhtiar, who chaired the meeting, emphasised the need for gearing up the momentum to meet timelines of the projects.

He said that the government in consultation with the Chinese government had succeeded in expanding the CPEC scope to include other priority areas under its framework, including socio-economic development, poverty alleviation an agricultural and industrial cooperation.

Chinese Ambassador Yao Jing, who attended the meeting, said that CPEC was heading in the right direction.

He said that the projects would continue to progress on expedited pace as reiterated by Prime Minister Imran Khan during his recent meeting with the Chinese foreign minister.

During the meeting, various CPEC projects were scrutinised in detail. The power secretary informed the meeting that the synchronised demand-supply study of CPEC energy projects would be firmed up by next month. Nepra said that all pending tariff issues, including Port Qasim and Gwadar 300MW coal project, would be resolved soon.

Talking about the Kohala hydropower project, Bakhtyar reiterated that it was an important project and expressed gratitude to the Chinese government and the ‘Three Gorges’ company for extending cooperation in this regard. It was decided that the process for establishing an appellate tribunal would be expedited to resolve future tariff issues of energy projects.

The meeting was informed that the Gwadar Development Authority, headed by the Balochistan chief minister, has approved the Gwadar ‘City Master Plan’ with some minor modifications. The communications secretary informed that Multan-Sukkur Motorway would be opened soon for general traffic as work on it was almost complete.

Both the planning minister and the Chinese ambassador appreciated the pace of work on the Eastbay Expressway project. Orange Line Train project and ongoing projects in Gwadar were also discussed in detail.

Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission Dr Mohammad Jehanzeb Khan, Planning Secretary Zafar Hasan and representatives from Chinese enterprises and senior officials from relevant ministries attended the meeting.