Pakistan and China Celebrate Completion of 10 Years of CPEC, Pledge Continued Cooperation

Pakistan and China Celebrate Completion of 10 Years of CPEC, Pledge Continued Cooperation

Islamabad, August 1, 2023 – A special ceremony was held on Monday, July 31, 2023, in Islamabad to mark the momentous occasion of the completion of the first decade of the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). High-level leadership from both Pakistan and China graced the event, demonstrating the significance of this milestone in bilateral cooperation.

Among the distinguished attendees were Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and President Xi Jinping’s Special Representative, Vice Premier of the State Council of China, Mr. He Lifeng. The ceremony also witnessed the presence of senior ministers from both nations, high-ranking officials, and corporate executives of leading Chinese companies operating in Pakistan.

During the event, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Vice Premier He Lifeng commended the transformative impact of CPEC on Pakistan’s socio-economic development and its contributions to the prosperity of both nations. CPEC, as the flagship project of President Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), has played a crucial role in overcoming infrastructure bottlenecks and eliminating power shortages in Pakistan.

Both leaders expressed their satisfaction at the remarkable achievements of the CPEC projects in the past decade and reaffirmed their commitment to further developing the initiative as a high-quality, demonstrable model of the BRI.

The ceremony also paid tribute to the dedication and hard work of Pakistani and Chinese experts, engineers, and workers who contributed to the timely completion of all CPEC projects in Pakistan. Vice Premier He Lifeng read a special message from President Xi Jinping, congratulating the government and people of Pakistan on this momentous occasion.

To commemorate the significance of the event, a special Postal Stamp, Commemorative Coin, and First Day Cover were issued. Additionally, both sides unveiled a First Decade of CPEC memento, capturing the achievements made and the futuristic vision of CPEC.

CPEC was initiated in 2013 after the visit of the Chinese Premier to Pakistan, and over the past ten years, the two countries have collaborated on various projects in energy, transport infrastructure, port/airport development, and digital connectivity.

The tangible benefits of CPEC to Pakistan have been substantial, with the creation of over 200,000 jobs, an addition of 8,000 MW of power to the national grid, and the construction of 510 kilometers of highways and 932 kilometers of road networks. Furthermore, CPEC has facilitated the laying of an 820-kilometer-long optical fiber line, greatly improving connectivity in the region.

Looking ahead, Phase-II of CPEC will witness further expansion of cooperation between the two countries in areas such as rural revitalization, agricultural development, industrialization, green development, and science and technology.

The ceremony also celebrated the cultural and civilizational affinity between Pakistan and China, showcasing various performances highlighting Pakistan’s pluralistic and progressive culture.

The completion of the first decade of CPEC is seen as a testament to the robust and enduring partnership between Pakistan and China. It has not only strengthened economic ties but also fostered a deeper understanding and friendship between the peoples of the two nations. As both countries embark on the next phase of CPEC, they are poised to achieve even greater heights of progress and cooperation.