CPEC: A dream come true or an allegory.

Byline: Zuhaib Khokhar

"With faith, discipline and selfless devotion to duty, there is nothing worthwhile that you cannot achieve".- (Quaid-e-Azam).

Pakistan is sharing its borders with India, Afghanistan, Iran, and China but more closely relationships and true friend is China who always aided Pakistan in hard times and they have been enjoying their cordial relationships with each other since 1950s. Almost 66 years of Pakistan-China bilateral cordial relations have been completed, continuously moving towards new heights of trust and development in their relationships that has demonstrated a sense of mutual understanding, strength and maturity over long-term along with enchanting slogans like "all-weather, time-tested, deeper than oceans and higher than Himalayas, sweeter than honey and stronger than steel".

China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) also familiar as North-South Economic Corridor is the biggest gift of true friendship by China. CPEC is the flagship of China's ambition i.e. One Belt One Road (OBOR); an initiative expounded by Chinese President Mr. Xi Jinping in 2013. It is aimed at economic integration and better infrastructure ingenuities. It has direct impact on the development and growth of Pakistani economy. Corridor projects will result in growth of economic development (Gross Domestic Product, Gross National Product or Gross National Income) and economic growth (rise in productivity and capacity to produce goods and services within a country). It has an ability for bringing economic integration and cooperation. It is a win-win situation for both Pakistan and China because they both are the direct and primary beneficiaries of this mega project. The OBOR is consisted of two (2) international trade connections namely the land based (Silk Route Economic Belt) and ocean going (21st Century Maritime

Silk Road).

The CPEC is seemed as having strong potential ties between China and Pakistan including economic and general public as well. The CPEC has a potential to serve as a triggering force for trade and economic activities among China, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, India and Central Asian states. Undoubtedly, this initiative can lead to far-reaching incentives and better future visions but simultaneously it has undeniable challenges and risks that could curb the economic progress, sustainability, cooperation and peace.

Pakistan has been always at odds by different rivals and is always the hot issue and this time the challenges are attached with CPEC. CPEC is faced by many threats whether they are external or internal threats but Pakistan and China collectively need to take certain actions to guarantee the CPEC without preventions.

The challenges faced by CPEC are mainly consisted of political, internal and regional security issues, political disgruntlement, Indian promotional activities of terrorism and separatism against Pakistan, chaotic situation in Afghanistan and controversies of different entities like media, India, Western countries and others.

The good thing is that CPEC is not only hinged with challenges but it has also better future roadmap and incredible prospects that can lead Pakistan towards progress and these prospects mentioned in this essay are economic growth, investment incentives in Pakistan, globalization benefits, geopolitical benefits, development of infrastructure, job opportunities, abolition of energy crises, business opportunities, modern telecommunication benefits, and tourism benefits.

It can be stated as our living-standard is gauged by quantity of goods and services available in a country. Therefore, economic growth means a higher standard of living (directly proportional). A country's economy needs to continue to increase because its population grows with the passage of time. If an economy is at stagnant position, there will be fewer jobs for higher population. Keeping it in mind, Pakistan needs to boost up its economy and economic growth.

It will result in productivity, efficiency, increase in projects, jobs and reduction in poverty and unemployment rate. Ultimately, economic growth will be achieved; reason being economic growth is supremely based on investments. The main credit behind the fulfillment of these objectives will go to CPEC.

Investment incentives within Pakistan is the succeeding benefit after economic growth. An overall expenditure for CPEC is estimated about $52 billion, in 2017, to be completed in different years along with different phases and areas. As of now, in FY 2019, the...

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