“CPEC is transforming Pakistan and opening the doors of new business opportunities, making the country an international business destination.”
The above views were expressed by Mr. Hassan Daud Butt, CEO of KP Board of Investment and Trade on the 9th Asian Management Research and Case (AMRC) Conference 2021 keynote session titled “Progress and Way Forward of Industrial Cooperation under CPEC” moderated by Dr. Omair Harron, Assistant Professor, Suleman Dawood School of Business, Lahore University of Management Sciences on Sunday.
Mr. Hassan further mentioned that Pakistan needs to create 1.3 million additional jobs on average every year, as the number of working age people will grow from 4 million to 5 million by 2035. 800,000 jobs worth of industry are set for relocation from China. “BRI reduces travel times by up to 12 percent, reducing trade costs amongst its partner countries and CPEC is the buckle of the belt.”
Maintaining that CPEC is one corridor with many doors including trade & market access, industrial development & global value chains, socioeconomic development & poverty alleviation, agriculture modernization & marketing, Gwadar oil city & blue economy, regional connectivity & third country participation, etc, Hassan stated that there are huge opportunities for investors in various sectors.
“Industrial cooperation under CPEC is entering into the implementation stage. 9 SEZs encompass advantages within 3 years to attract Chinese, global and local investors to substitute imports, promote export, create direct/indirect jobs (skilled/semi-skilled), joint ventures in automobile, iron & steel, textile, IT, petrochemicals, food and beverage processing, light manufacturing, electrical appliances, mineral processing and others.” Mr. Hassan also highlighted the Rashakai project’s key features.
For Sunstainable development of land development along the coast is critical. “With ports such as Gwadar deep-sea port, Pakistan not only connects major stakeholders but also the main engines of growth in Asia, the Middle East and Europe. The development of Gwadar port in CPEC portfolio has opened up new vistas of growth for industry and trade, which are closely related to sea transport and port operations,” Mr. Hassan concluded.