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Five new berths to be added to Gwadar deep sea-port

BEIJING: The Gwadar deep-sea port development will gain further momentum as work on its expansion plan is set to start from January, director general, Planning and Development, Gwadar Port Authority, Munir Ahmed Jan said on Tuesday.

Under the expansion plan, five new berths would be added to the existing three berths for handling bigger ships, he said while talking to APP.

Munir, who recently visited the Chinese capital to attend the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Media Forum, said the first phase of the port, an important component of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, has already been completed.

“Now, we have entered the second phase, which will ensure 16 meters depth to facilitate bigger ships,” he said.

The existing port has three 14-meter deep berths to handle ships and is the deepest port in Pakistan. In future, the depth of the port would be increased to 20 meters, making it the port deepest in the region, he added.

Development and expansion of the port have been leased to China for 40 years. “The pilot phase of the free economic zone has already been completed.”

In the initial stage of the project, $48 million were invested by five Chinese and three Pakistani companies. “The main coverage area of the free economic zone will be 923 acres, and work on it is likely to start in the next phase.”

About Eastern Bay Express, he said the work started in October this year and would be completed in 30 months. “It will be an express access way linking the Gwadar Port to the Coastal Highway,” he added.

The development work of the port is ahead of the timeline as far as the construction of different projects of the port is concerned.

The Gwadar Port development and allied facilities would generate employment opportunities for locals after resolving power and water issues.

The work on Pakistan China Vocational and Technical Institution would start soon to meet the demand of the skilled workers for the port and free zone.

The land has been acquired for the purpose, while the design and feasibility study have also been completed.

The construction work was expected to begin by the end of this year, the port DG informed.

He said Gwadar port master plan would be launched in December, as it has been completed.

The DG was confident that it would enhance business and trade activities.

Munir Jan said at the micro level, Gwadar was witnessing a number of activities. A lot of local and foreign visitors come and stay here.

“The national flag carrier, PIA has a daily flight and hotels have 100 percent room occupancy and are running a good business.”

About the new Gwadar airport construction, he said it would be completed with the Chinese grant. All the initial work including design and the feasibility study has already been finalised and the groundbreaking was likely to be performed in January, he added.

One of the largest planes, A-380 could land at the airport which would be completed in 36 months.

This year, two important events, including an expo and Asian Parliament Association Assembly were organised in the Convention Centre to seek further investment.

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The Lanzhou to Islamabad road and rail service completes its first journey

Kerry Logistics has launched its first rail and road multimodal freight service from Lanzhou, China to Islamabad, Pakistan, reinforcing South Asia’s overland transportation network.

The service, which is operated by Kerry Logistics’ member company Lanzhou Pacific Logistics Corporation Limited (LPL), is also expected to deepen trade cooperation along the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

It is Kerry Logistics’ second international freight route between Lanzhou and South Asia, following the launch of a freight train service from Lanzhou to Kathmandu, Nepal.

The Lanzhou to Islamabad service began operating on October 23, 2018, with a block train departing from Lanzhou and travelling 3,300 kilometres to the Kashgar Comprehensive Bonded Zone in Xinjiang.

Once the train arrived, goods were loaded onto trucks and transported 1,200 kilometres to Islamabad.

The journey was completed in just 13 days which, according to a statement from Kerry Logistics, is 15 days less than the conventional ocean-road journey would take.

Edwardo Erni, Managing Director of China and North Asia for Kerry Logistics, said: “As we continue to expand our capabilities and implement our development blueprint of capturing the opportunities along the Belt and Road trade route, we are thrilled to launch this new service that offers a significantly time-saving option to our customers.

“Following the establishment of a new subsidiary in Pakistan in July 2018, this new service will help to better equip us to capitalise on the increasing trade activities between China and Pakistan facilitated by the CPEC.”

The new multimodal freight solution between Lanzhou and Islamabad is set to become a regular service in 2019.

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Pakistan-China cultural cooperation increasing under CPEC

ISLAMABAD: Chinese national music concert, “Music on Spring” was organised by Embassy of Peoples Republic of China in collaboration with China Cultural Centre in Pakistan, Network of International Cultural Link Entities and Jinan Opera and Dance Drama Theatre. Several Chinese musicians performed at the event and enthralled audiences. The concert was held at Pakistan National Council of Arts (PNCA). While speaking at the occasion, Embassy of China Cultural Counselor You Yi thanked PNCA for extending cooperation. He said that the cultural troupe visit to Pakistan showed strong bilateral relations in the field of art and culture, people to people contact and education sectors. He said that in process of building One Belt and One Road project and specifically China Pakistan Economic Corridor, Pakistan and China were going to further strengthen their relations in the field of culture.

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Mushahid says Pakistan & China to jointly counter all challenges to CPEC – 4th CPEC Media Forum

Mushahid says Pakistan & China to jointly counter all challenges to CPEC, 4th CPEC Media Forum calls for ‘Rapid Response System’ to counter fake news
Beijing, November 17: The China Economic Net (CEN) and the Pakistan-China Institute (PCI), in collaboration with the Chinese Embassy in Islamabad, jointly organized the 4th CPEC Media Forum, which concluded today in Beijing . The purpose of the forum was to disseminate factual information on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), and also to devise a joint Pakistan-China strategy to counter negative perceptions that are generated by vested interests and detractors in the region. A 12-member delegation took part in the event, led by Senator Mushahid Hussain, Chairman PCI and Senate Foreign Affairs Committee.
The Ambassador of Pakistan to China, Masood Khalid gave his opening remarks, where he talked about the stance of the new government on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), after the conclusion of the Prime Minister’s visit to China. “During the visit of the Prime Minister to China, there are four very important achievements. Both countries have expressed satisfaction with progress of CPEC, both sides are committed to agree to complete the ongoing projects of CPEC, as well as create employment, enhance people’s welfare and promote industrial development. The two sides also agreed to promote the construction of CPEC in the future by taking it to the next phase which will be decided at the upcoming meeting of the Joint Coordination Committee (JCC) of CPEC in Beijing next month, and both sides also agreed to create a social economic development working group apart from a political working group through the two Foreign Ministries.” The Ambassador also emphasized the role of media in disseminating accurate information on CPEC and said that there should be more media interaction between the two countries. “We need to guard BRI and CPEC against the growing negativity of its detractors.”
Senator Mushahid Hussain, Chairman of PCI and Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, talking about China’s peaceful rise, said that there is a shift in the global economic and political power from the West to the East, and China’s peaceful rise and amazing development is an important inspiration for developing countries. the BRI has now spawned a “Greater South Asia comprising South Asia, Central Asia, China, Iran and Afghanistan driven by economy and energy”. The One Belt, One Road is opening the door to a new world with CPEC as its success story since it is the flagship & pilot  project of the BRI. Gwadar Port, centrepiece of CPEC, is now a very active functional port and it is opening up the entire region, not just Pakistan.” He also lauded CPEC’s role, as an ‘irreversible, mutually beneficial strategic project which has national consensus’ in Pakistan’s economic growth rate, saying the highest 5.8% growth rate in a decade is attributable to CPEC, plus the Western route has connected Quetta to Gwadar with an 8-hour road journey. Pakistan’s chronic energy crisis has been controlled, with an additional nearly 10,000 megawatts of electricity since launch of CPEC, and in Thar, coal is being mined and turned into electricity. Citing the importance of media, the Senator said, “Today, we are seeking to establish a rapid response information mechanism through collaboration between Pakistan-China Institute & China Economic Net, which both have the most popular website on CPEC & BRI’. Former Information Minister Senator Pervez Rashid urged the need to counter terrorism and extremism to create a conducive environment for promotion of CPEC. Dr Shezra Mansab Ali Kharal, ex-MNA, spoke about role of women in CPEC, including employment & empowerment of women in Thar where women work as truck drivers.
After the speeches in the opening session, an award ceremony was held titled “CPEC Communication Golden Anchor Awards,” judged by a jury from both Pakistan and China, where winners were presented the awards by Ambassador Masood Khalid for best reporting on CPEC, both in Pakistan & China.
PCI also announced the Rapid Response Information-Exchange Network (RRIN), in collaboration with CEN, using a 3 Cs approach: counter negativity, compare Chinese assistance and CPEC with others since on CPEC there are no political strings attached, and connect the Pakistani & Chinese media, which will use the increased role of media  in disseminating facts and accurate, updated information on CPEC.
Addressing the session on “The Way Forward”, Mustafa Hyder Sayed, Executive Director, Pakistan-China Institute, termed the CPEC Media Forum as a ‘shining example of Pakistan-China Media Cooperation’.
The event concluded with sessions on “CPEC and Pakistan-China Media Cooperation”, “Strengthening Information Exchange between China and Pakistan Media” and “Facts-Based Construction of Narratives on BRI and CPEC”, where media persons from both Pakistan and China gave their input on increasing media collaboration between the two countries.
The event had representation of senior journalists from print, electronic and digital media the top media outlets, government and Communist Party of China officials, parliamentarians, academia and students.
[11:39, 11/17/2018] Sharyar PCI: Summary: The Embassy of China in Islamabad hosted the 4th CPEC Media Forum, organized by PCI in collaboration with China Economic Net. At the end of the forum, PCI announced a “Rapid Response System” to counter fake news propogating against the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). The Forum, held in Beijing, also served the purpose of disseminating factual information on CPEC, and countering any negative misperceptions propogating in the media. Senator Mushahid Hussain, Chairman PCI and Senate Foreign Affairs Committee lauded CPEC’s role as an “irreversible” and mutually beneficial strategic project, which had a major role to play in achieving a growth rate of 5.8%. The event has representation from media journalists, both print and digital, along with Communist Party of China officials.

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CPEC Media Forum on 16th November

BEIJING: Pakistan and Chinese media persons, analysts and lawmakers will gather in Beijing, China, on Friday for day-long discussions to enhance cooperation between the journalists of the two countries and to counter native propaganda against the multi-billion China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Pakistani delegation led by Chairman Pakistan-China Institute and Senate Foreign Affairs Committee Mushahid Hussain Sayed has arrived in Beijing. Those who will speak at the opening session include Wang Dongmei, Executive Secretary, All-China Journalists Association, Masood Khalid, Ambassador of Pakistan to China, Ding Shi, Deputy Editor-in-Chief, Economic Daily and Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed.

CPEC communication awards will be announced of the Initiative: CPEC best investigative story of the year. There will be announcement of Building Rapid Response Information Exchange Network Representatives from PCI & China Economic Net (CEN) to elaborate the purpose of the network.

Delegates will deliver Keynote speeches on challenges of CPEC in the new phase of development. Mushahid Hussain said international political and economic environment has become competitive in recent years.

“In this context, CPEC is entering into a new phase of development and we will discuss as to what challenges will it confront and what are the most crucial problems that are needed to be tackled urgently? What should the media do?” he added.

Senator Pervaiz Rashid, former federal minister of information and broadcasting, representative from People’s Daily, Dr Shazra Kamran, former MNA, Pakistani delegate to UNESCO, Guan Xinguo, Depurty Director of International News Division, Xinhua News Agency, Muneer Kamal, Ex-Chairman of PSX, Shen Weixing, Deputy Editor-in-Chief, Guangming Daily, Munir Ahmed Jan, Director General Planning and Development Gwadar Port Authority and Jiang Heping, Deputy Director of News Center, CGTN will speak on the topic.

The forum will discuss “strengthening information exchange between China and Pakistan media.” Moderator: LI Li, Vice-President, China economic net other speakers include Li Xiguang, Director of Tsinghua International Center for Communication, Yasir Rehman, anchorperson for program, CPEC Time at PTV News, Liu Yunyun, Assistant Executive Editor of Beijing Review, Murtaza Solangi, senior journalist, former director general, Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation, Wang Cong, Chief correspondent, Global Times and Wang Lin, journalist, CBN.

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Region benefiting from CPEC � Turkish Ambassador

Turkish Ambassador Mustafa Yurdakul on Thursday called on Balochistan Governor Amanullah Yasinzai at his office in Quetta.

During the meeting matters of bilateral cooperation were discussed, according to an official handout.

“Pakistan and Turkey have strong relations for decades,” the governor said, adding “under the prevailing economic and political changes in the region both countries should enhance bilateral relations for the prosperity of both nations”.

Earlier on Wednesday, the Turkish envoy had called on Chief Minister Jam Kamal at his office. During the meeting the CM lauded Turkey’s support for Pakistan.

The envoy had also visited Quetta Chamber of Commerce and Industry (QCCI) where he met QCCI President Jumma Khan Badezai.
Yurdakul had lauded the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project and said that it would benefit the region.

In his maiden visit to Balochistan, Yurdakul said it has brought so much happiness to him. “The aim of visit to Balochistan is to know the difficulties of traders and getting suggestions from them,” he said.

He highlighted communication on both sides can boost bilateral relations.
The envoy said relations between Pakistan and Turkey have significantly improved and called for mutual interaction of trade delegations and economists between the two countries.
The president welcomed the delegation and said “we perceive Turkey as our second home”.

During the discussion, business opportunities available in the province were highlighted. Badezai invited Turkey to increase the bilateral trade by investing in agriculture and livestock sectors.

Meanwhile, the QCCI former president Salahudin Khilji briefed the delegation about the difficulties in visa policies of the two countries. He stressed the need for ease in the policy to boost bilateral trade.
To this, the envoy said the chamber’s help would be sought in addressing this issue.

Meanwhile, a delegation of Balochistan Bar Association led by President Shah Muhammad Jatoi met with the governor.

Yasinzai said: “Without justice, our society can’t be developed. Supremacy of law is the only solution to eradicate crimes from our soil”. He stressed the need for strong judicial system in society.

The delegation discussed with the governor special grant for lawyers, land for the community and other issues.

The governor assured his full cooperation and support for the lawyers’ community.

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Regional Connectivity under CPEC will be enhanced by inclusion in SCO – Mandviwala

ISLAMABAD: Deputy Chairman Senate Saleem Mandviwala said on Wednesday that Pakistan’s inclusion in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) had further enhanced its regional connectivity and economic prospects.

He said that Pakistan’s strategic location would make it a regional hub of trade and commerce to Central Asia and SCO member states.

He was speaking at reception hosted by Senator (R) Sehar Kamran to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Pakistan-Russia diplomatic relations and the ‘Award of Cooperation’ conferred by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affair to Senator Sehar Kamran for promoting the Pakistan-Russia relations.

Deputy Chairman Senate observed that contemporary global and regional politics revolves around geo-economics and in this context, China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a flagship project of Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is presenting revolutionary opportunities for regional countries to build strong economic, trade and commercial ties.

“CPEC ushered a new era of growth in Pakistan and made an attractive destination for foreign direct investment”, Deputy Chairman Senate Saleem Mandviwala said. He greeted Sehar Kamran for receiving a very well deserved state award “Award of Cooperation” for promoting friendly ties between Pakistan and Russia.

Earlier, in her welcome address, Sehar Kamran, member of Senate Forum for Policy Research (SFPR) and President Centre for Pakistan and Gulf Studies (CPGS) said that Pakistan and the Russian Federation are connected by a deep historical and cultural affinity, geographical proximity, and a convergence of strategic and economic interests. Besides Saleem Mandviwalla, Muhammad Faisal Vawda Federal Minister for Water Resources, Senator Sherry Rehman, Kanwal Shozab MNA and other high ranking functionaries were also present during the reception.

Alexey Y. Dedov, Ambassador of Russian Federation congratulated the Senator Sehar Kamran for receiving the Russia’s state ‘Award of Cooperation.’ He said that Senator Kamran, as a member of Senate of Pakistan and as well as the President of Centre for Pakistan and Gulf Studies (CPGS) has worked tirelessly to improve the bilateral relation between the two nations. Dedov said that Senator Kamran is a great friend of Russian Federation and we greatly value her contributions.

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NHA plans Gilgit-Chitral Road to provide an alternate route to CPEC

ISLAMABAD: National Highway Authority (NHA) has planned to provide an alternate route to China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) by building a 216 kilometre road linking Gilgit with Shandoor.

Talking to APP, an official of NHA Wednesday said the project would be part of the Gilgit-Shandoor-Chitral road and would provide an alternative route to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Karakoram Highway section.

The official said new road will be an all-weather road and during the winter season be very useful. Moreover, it will provide another route to Chitral other than the Lowari Tunnel.

In the 6th JCC of CPEC held in 2016, it was agreed to include Chitral CPEC road from Gilgit, Shandoor, Chitral to Chakdara in CPEC portfolio.

He said the road starts from Gilgit town located on Indus Highway and ends at Chitral town located at Nowshera-Chitral Highway (N-45).

He said the feasibility study of 148 km Shandoor-Chitral section has already been completed whereas the process of feasibility study and preliminary design of the remaining 216 km section Gilgit-Shandoor were on the anvil.

About the present condition of the road, he said it was constructed in 2002 by the provincial government but its sharp curves and steep gradient make movement of traffic difficult and unsuitable for heavy traffic.

About the objectives of the project, he said that it would connect adjoining areas and valleys, will help boost tourism and create new job opportunities for local residents.

The project will provide better communication system to the people of the area and after completion of Lowari tunnel, this road shall serve as an alternate to Karakorum Highway and create new job opportunities for local residents.

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392 Km Sukkur-Multan Motorway, a major component of CPEC, to be operational next year

ISLAMABAD: Construction work of 392-kilometer Sukkur-Multan Motorway is going on swiftly and is likely to be completed in time and become operational by August next year.

An official of National Highway Authority (NHA) over 70 percent of total work has been completed, out of which 392 kilometer roadbed and culvert passage, and other structures have been completed.

He said all the bridges are near completion, and asphalt pavement works are advancing at full speed, and the building construction and ancillary works also being implemented actively.

The 33 km Multan-Shujaabad section of the project was inaugurated early this year but it could not be opened to traffic due to incomplete work of the section, the official said.

The motorway is a major component of the China Pakistan Economic Corridor with the bulk of financing to be distributed by various Chinese state-owned banks, he said adding that the Pakistani government in January 2016 awarded the contact to build this section to China State Construction Engineering.

The purpose of the motorway is to provide a high-speed, six-lane toll road facility for efficient and safe transportation of passengers and goods to and from industrial and economic hubs of the country.

The road is being built after a framework agreement between the governments of Pakistan and China, he said.

Starting from Multan the six-lane motorway would pass through Jalalpur Peerwala, Ahmed Pur East, Rahimyar Khan, Sadiqabad,Ubaro,Pano Aqil and end at Sukkur.

The project would consist of 54 bridges including one major bridge on River Sutlej.

The motorway will have 12 service areas, 10 rest areas, 11 interchanges, 10 flyovers, and 426 underpasses.

Its interchanges are located at Multan, Shujaabad, Jalalpur Pirwala, Uch Sharif, Taranda, Zahir Peer, Bahadarpur,Guddu,Ghotki,Pano Aqil,Sukkur,Bahawalpur Road,Lodhran Road, Alipur Road, Chachran Sharif Road,Kaman Bhutta – Sadiqabad Road,and Sadiqabad Kashmore Road,JDW Unit 3Sugar Mill Road and Grand Trunk Road.

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Agricultural cooperation between Pakistan and China expanding

FAISALABAD: Deputy Consul General, Chinese Consulate in Lahore, Peng Zhengwu has said that Chinese mango import from Pakistan will be doubled by next year due to its unique aroma and taste.

During his visit to the Confucius Institute, University of Agriculture Faisalabad, he said that China and Pakistan agricultural ties were being further strengthened as a step towards development and uplift. He said: “The Xinjiang Agriculture University and the University of Agriculture Faisalabad are enjoying excellent cooperation not only in the field of education but also in research and development programmes.” He said that the collaboration would bring fruitful results. He said that under the banner of the Confucius Institute, UAF, around 7,000 students had learned the Chinese language that would further boost the people-to-people contact. He was of the view that China gave the great honour of the Pak-China friendship and recognised Pakistanis as their time tested friend. UAF Registrar M Hussain said: “Our friendship is deeper than the sea and higher than Himalayas and sweeter than honey and people of both countries have heartiest feelings for each others.” He said that the university was housing Confucius Institute under which thousands of students were imparted education about Chinese language, culture, cooking etc. He said: “We are enjoying time-tested bilateral relations based on mutual cooperation aimed at making the world more prosperous and peaceful.”

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