A recent development in Pakistan’s economy has been the Silk Road Economic Belt (SRB). This development has become a major factor in international trade. The SRB is an eight thousand mile long economic belt stretching from China to the Middle East. At its completion, it will be the largest economic corridor in the world. The economic prospects of the corridor are enormous.
China is the main buyer of the commodities and manufactures most of the products that enter this area. It supplies a large number of items including textiles, garments, machine parts, automobiles and goods in the range of consumer products. Most of the items are manufactured in the provinces of Shandong, Jianyang and Guilin. Over ninety percent of the products are produced in China. Some products made by foreign companies also come into the market through the various ports of call.
The road passes through the most developed areas of Pakistan. The major cities that it passes through include Islamabad, Lahore, Quetta, Karachi and Peshawar. It connects the urban centers of China with those of Pakistan. The CPEC is an important part of the corridor as it plans to connect Pakistan with the western areas through the Karakoram highway Silk Road economic belt.
The corridor has great significance for Pakistan’s future economic growth. This is the reason why the federal government has made important investments in terms of transport infrastructure and industrial estates. The CPEC makes possible an economic development which is very important for Pakistan. The political as well as military aspect of the economy can flourish only when the necessary infrastructural facilities are in place.
The SRB will act as a trade route between the two Asian giants China and India. It will open up a new market for the goods and commodities of the two countries and reduce the costs involved. The countries like India, Japan, South Korea, Philippines are in immediate need of the transport infrastructure.
The CPEC is being managed by the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARCC). SAARCC includes twenty-eight countries which form the economic powerhouse of the region. They constitute almost one-third of the world’s economy. As far as exports are concerned, Japan is the largest exporter of automobiles while India is the largest manufacturer of automobiles in the region. The countries of the Arabian Peninsula, UAE, Maldives and other Asian countries are also in the list of importers of automobiles. The list is complete with the names of all the automobile manufacturers and exporters.
The CPEC is expected to revolutionize the trade scenario between the two Asian countries, China and India. The plan is aimed at creating a platform for the free trade and strong economic integration between these two powerful nations. A large number of multinational companies from Japan, India and other parts of the world are planning to invest in these countries through the CPEC.
A large number of multinational companies have already made investments in the different roads and ports in the Arabian Peninsula, Gulf of Oman, Fujairah, Dubai, and Qatar. This development has created more employment opportunities for the local population. A successful implementation of the road connectivity strategy of the CPEC will increase the trade and boost the economy of these two countries. The future investors will also be benefited with a liberal trade regime in the economic belt of the Pakistan and facilitate them with maximum foreign exchange opportunities.
CPEC road construction will primarily connect Pakistan and China through a transport corridor of high speed railways. These railways will run through a six hundred kilometers of the scenic Baluchistan province. This corridor of the railways will help the investors to access the markets of central Asia through the CPEC. They can also set up their businesses in these countries through easy access to the consumers. The road construction is mainly being carried out for the commercialization of these two countries.
Once the CPEC road reaches its full potential, it can be used as an international transit route for the exports of these two countries. The Baluchistan port and the China-Pakistan economic corridor can be harnessed to make the goods available to the global market. This can create better trade scenario between these two countries and other trading nations. The corridor will be able to carry the heavy and bulky commodities to the global market. It will also help to channelize the surplus commodities from China to Pakistan and vice versa.
CPEC road construction has made things easier for the Chinese as well as the Pakistani entrepreneurs. These countries are now well on the way to become high income producers. It has also opened up opportunities for the Indian businessmen. The CPEC will continue to be a viable option for the investors as it is one of the safest investments in the present scenario.