China-Pakistan Corridor: Where is it headed?

Five years after its launch, it is in the mutual interests of both governments to ensure that tangible benefits reach the Pakistani population soon and that greater transparency is achieved

A 2016 photo of Chinese trucks parked at Pakistan's Gwadar port. Gwadar is strategically important because of its closeness to the Strait of Hormuz, the cross junction of vital international shipping routes.
A 2016 photo of Chinese trucks parked at Pakistan's Gwadar port. Gwadar is strategically important because of its closeness to the Strait of Hormuz, the cross junction of vital international shipping routes.PHOTO: DAWN/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

In 2015, China and Pakistan signed the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) agreement connecting both countries with about 58 projects worth about US$62 billion (S$83 billion): eight projects to develop Pakistan's Gwadar port, city and airport in Baluchistan, 21 coal, hydro and solar power plants, power transmission lines, highways, railways as well as a fibre optic cable project.

China saw an economically prosperous and stable Pakistan as politically advantageous and wanted to create a geostrategic connectivity corridor from its resource-rich Muslim Xinjiang province to Pakistan's Gwadar city and port.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 17, 2020, with the headline 'China-Pakistan Corridor: Where is it headed?'. Print Edition | Subscribe