CPEC is the centrepiece of China’s One Belt One Road initiative: Senator Sherry Rehman
BEIJING, Oct. 15 (People’s Daily Online) –The One Belt One Road initiative is a huge project and there is national consensus in Pakistan on forging ahead with such a powerful vision that represents connectivity, infrastructure, trade and energy, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Vice President Senator Sherry Rehman said on Thursday in an interview with People’s Daily Online.
Rehman is in Beijing to attend the Asian Political Parties’ Special Conference on the Silk Road.
She said that in Pakistan, everybody is very excited about China’s One Belt One Road initiative and that the CPEC is seen as the centerpiece of this initiative. “We hope that we can really take the next millennium facing front with Asia rising and China’s power in this important dream for all of us,” she added.
In fact, as all-weather friends, the bilateral cooperation between China and Pakistan has advanced greatly in recent years. Pakistan handed the management of the Gwadar port over to a Chinese company in early 2013, which provides the linkage to the warm water of Arabian Sea, and cooperates with China in Thar coal project, a two billion dollar joint venture in 2015, which is, according to Sherry Rehman, a long-term investment in the region. It is also a transformational move, and a big gain for Asia.
“Pakistan is the gateway to central Asia and the Far East and connects Afghanistan and other countries. The One Belt One Road initiative is about connecting the landmass of Asia to a huge part of Europe. It is a big Eurasian project that really matters,” said Sherry Rehman.
“We look at it as a mutual win-win initiative between China and Pakistan. We hope it will actualize fast,” she added.
The party leader stressed that there is a huge public consensus in Pakistan on doing business with China, including both the government as well as private companies. This allows the government move forward to build consensus, connect the nodes and, coordinate various resources to materialize hundreds of projects that link the China-Pakistan economic corridor, she says.
“The people of Pakistan are aware that the Pakistani component of the OBOR has the potential to transform the future of Pakistan and the region. They know that all the Pakistan sectors are working together to boost this project. There is already a broad consensus to embrace the new Chinese vision and dream,” said the Senator.
On the many mechanisms of cooperation in Asia, such as China-India-Bangladesh-Myanmar Economic Corridor, Rehman said, “Inevitably these routes will overlap and connect at some point. We don’t see overlapping relationships as a zero sum game or one relationship excludes the other. The ability to do business in overlapping layers is going to be the next century dynamic.”