ISLAMABAD: Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Information and Broadcasting Firdous Ashiq Awan said on Tuesday that China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) was reshaping the geo-economic landscape of the entire region.
Addressing the ‘Cross-regional media fusion conference on the Belt and Road partners’, Awan commended the Pakistani media for playing a pivotal role in nullifying the anti-CEPC propaganda and also for contributing to the development of the concept of national ownership. “Similar efforts are required by the media of partner countries participating in the BRI.”
With regard to hostile propaganda against BRI by global media, Awan stressed the need for collaboration, coordination and cross-regional media fusion among the media outlets of participating countries.
Appreciating the Centre for Global and Strategic and Studies (CGSS) for organising the conference, she said that the role and contribution of think-tanks in evaluating the regional and global issues and providing intellectual and pragmatic solutions to those challenges can hardly be over-emphasized.
“President Xi Jinping’s vision of One Belt, One Road (OBOR) is not only a bold but also an innovative initiative that knits the world in a community of shared interests.”
The SAPM said that the OBOR vision was the harbinger of a new era of connectivity and integration of member countries, which would bridge the gap between the North and the South.
She said that sustained progress was being made in the implementation of the second phase of CPEC in Pakistan wherein the emphasis would be on industrial and agricultural cooperation, socio-economic development and technical training. With the highest level of transparency, efficiency, and effectiveness, the building blocks of CPEC were being installed, she added.
Awan said that Prime Minister Imran Khan, during his visit to Gwadar, had performed the groundbreaking of Rs65 billion Zhob-Kuchlak section of CEPC’s western route, Rs17 billion Makran Coast transmission line project, Rs23 billion New Gwadar International Airport project, a hospital as well as a vocational institute.
She said that Chinese government would also invest $1 billion in the socio-economic sector in the next two years. “China has offered 20,000 scholarships for Pakistani students, besides financing to build over 1,000 small schools in different parts of the country.”
She said that recently, 300MW coal power plant was inaugurated in Gwadar, while Multan-Sukkur Motorway was also opened for traffic.
The SAPM maintained that OBOR, through CEPC, was Pakistan’s passport to a newer level of development and progress.