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APP DigitalCPEC is a transformational project and there is a complete national consensus on its indispensability for national development efforts, Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood said in a meeting with Chairman CPEC Authority, General (R) Asim Salim Bajwa here on Monday.

“Pakistan and China are firmly committed to the timely completion of CPEC projects and making it a High-Quality Demonstration Project of BRI”, said Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood here at a meeting in Islamabad.

Reviewing the progress of CPEC projects, Foreign Secretary said that CPEC energy and infrastructure projects had created thousands of jobs and had boosted industrial growth and productivity.

He said it was a testament to the fact that CPEC’s contribution to strengthen Pakistan’s economic landscape has been real and substantial, he emphasized.

The Foreign Secretary underlined that Pakistan’s focus in the next Phase of CPEC was on industrialization and socio-economic development, areas that will create vast job and growth opportunities for the common people.

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Three out of the nine CPEC SEZs, Rashakai, Dhabeji and Allama Iqbal, have been prioritized and Pakistan would welcome foreign direct investment in those projects.

“Three out of the nine CPEC SEZs; Rashakai, Dhabeji and Allama Iqbal, have been prioritized and Pakistan would welcome foreign direct investment”

General (R) Asim Salim Bajwa underscored that the CPEC Authority was committed to ensuring that CPEC projects were completed on time. He hoped that the 10th JCC, likely to be held in the near future, will create more economic opportunities and contribute to further expansion of CPEC projects.

He reaffirmed that Pakistan would welcome relocation of industry from China and in that regard will institute a regime that could encourage inflow of Chinese investments to Pakistan.

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The Foreign Secretary underlined that the Government was particularly focused on strengthening agricultural cooperation between Pakistan and China.

In this regard, he said a plan of Action, detailing the contours of this collaboration, was already being discussed between the two governments. The Foreign Secretary hoped that the Plan of Action will be expeditiously implemented.

It was reaffirmed in the meeting that post-COVID-19, through collective efforts of China and Pakistan, CPEC would become the hub for the regional trade and connectivity and will deepen people-to-people exchanges at a wider level.