Speaker National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq has said that Egypt wishes to participate in China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). He was talking to media after meeting with Egypt’s Ambassador to Pakistan, Sherif Shaheen who called on him on Thursday at Parliament House, Islamabad.
The Speaker stated that, “Egypt’s participation in CPEC will assign substantive meanings to the ‘transcontinental game-changer’ project by connecting Sino-Pak economic corridor to Africa, Europe and Middle East.”
Speaker remarked that, “Egypt’s proposal to join CPEC is akin to Allama Iqbal’s allusion to integration ‘from the shores of Nile to the Soil of Kashghar’, albeit in a different context.”
Egypt’s proposal to join CPEC, the Speaker said, “Egypt’s participation in CPEC will open a new channel of unhindered flow of trade between Africa and China through a secure and cheaper trade route via Pakistan.”
Speaker highlighted that, “Pakistan can emerge as linchpin in shortening trade distance between China and Egypt, and subsequently Africa and Europe, from months to days by circumventing the strait of Malacca and South China Sea.”
He said, “Pakistan is committed to foster regional integration by linking regional countries into ‘One Belt’ of trade, prosperity and connectivity and further added that Egypt’s location as gateway between Africa, Middle East and Europe is central to Pakistan’s strategic calculation of regional integration.”
“CPEC has the potential to effect an unparalleled connectivity between China, Europe and Africa through connecting Arabian Sea, Red Sea, and subsequently Mideterenian sea,” he said.
He added that, “Egypt’s proposal reinforces the idea that CPEC is not just a Pakistan-China bilateral trade corridor but a transcontinental project with potential to emerge as central hub of the world economy.”
He underlined the need for inclusion of other Middle Eastern countries to optimally realize the benefits of ‘Corridor of prosperity’. He concluded that, “Extension of CPEC to Egypt will unleash new dividends of common economic prosperity, joint development, energy security and connectivity within the region and beyond.” Earlier, both of them discussed bilateral relations between Pakistan and Egypt and importance of CPEC for the development and prosperity in the region.