CPEC changes image of Pakistan

EXPERTS from China, Pakistan and India have agreed that China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) has changed the economic and security outlook of Pakistan and South Asia with far reaching international implications. Speaking at US Institute of Peace in Washington, they said the Corridor had changed the narrative about Pakistan globally.
The way the CPEC has changed perception about Pakistan was aptly summed up by a speaker who pointed out “In 2012 when I visited the United States conversation about Pakistan was focused on security but in 2016, thanks to CPEC, Pakistan is also discussed in terms of trade and economic opportunities”. This is a strong rebuttal to the propaganda being unleashed by some regional powers that are opposing tooth and nail this purely economic project, which has the potential to change the destiny of people of Pakistan. The world is very concerned about extremism and ‘terrorism’ issues and we have been pointing out in these columns that poverty, backwardness and ignorance are some of the fundamental reasons behind the phenomenon. The CPEC would mostly pass through remote, backward and economically deprived regions of Pakistan and therefore, would have tremendous impact on socio-economic conditions there. This transformation in the lives of the people would surely help address the challenge of extremism and terrorism on sustainable basis. Thanks to our Chinese friends, who are investing hugely in CPEC related projects and thereby genuinely contributing towards resolution of the problems of extremism and terrorism. It has rightly been observed that this is something which $5 billion US aid under Kerry-Lugar Act could not do. Most of the countries of the region are eager to join gigantic project for shared prosperity and we hope the few others would also shun negativity and join it as this would create inter-dependencies that would help a lot in promoting regional peace and security. It is also expected that the economic activities being undertaken under the umbrella of CPEC would also help project Pakistan’s positive image and would serve as an incentive for companies from other countries to come and invest in Pakistan.

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