PM showcases CPEC’s benefits for region

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By Asghar Ali Mubarak

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday highlighted the importance of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) for the economic development, prosperity of entire region.
The Premier expressed these views while speaking with Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing, who paid farewell call on the Premier. During the visit, PM Imran Khan lauded the efforts of Ambassador Yao Jing in further deepening and strengthening Pakistan-China all-weather strategic cooperative partnership.
The Prime Minister conveyed that the people of Pakistan were keenly looking forward to welcoming President Xi Jinping to Pakistan.
Appreciating priorities of Chinese leadership for its people, he emphasised that the Chinese leadership had played a remarkable role in China’s socio-economic transformation and there was a lot to learn from Beijing’s example of economic development and poverty alleviation.
PM Imran underlined that during the envoy’s tenure, CPEC had entered the second phase focusing on industrialisation, agriculture and socio-economic development. Ambassador Yao thanked the premier for the leadership role he had played in further solidifying and deepening Pakistan’s relationship with China which was greatly valued by the Chinese leaders at the highest level. Ambassador Yao underlined that PM Imran’s vision and leadership was instrumental in Pakistan’s transformation. He emphasised that with the prime minister’s personal focus on poverty alleviation and people-centered approach, CPEC had entered into its second phase and will deliver substantial and immense benefits not only to people of Pakistan but the entire region. Ambassador Yao stated that Pakistan’s policy of “smart lockdown” in containing Covid-19 was internationally recognised and could be followed as a model by others to deal with a possible second wave of Covid-19.
Ambassador Yao maintained that he will have very fond memories of Pakistan and would wish to see Pakistan-China relationship further strengthened. He emphasised that China would continue to support Pakistan in pursuit of its national development and objectives. The prime minister appreciated the envoy’s overall contribution to the Pakistan-China partnership and wished him well in his future endeavors.
Ambassador Yao Jing served in Islamabad from October 2017 to September 2020. This was his third assignment in Pakistan.
Meanwile, Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday chaired a meeting to review the process to bring transparency and organize the provision of subsidy to various sectors in the country.
The meeting reviewed the reforms proposed for the subsidy system in the country. Imran Khan said that the government’s priorities over subsidy matter are clear cut and it is aimed at supporting weak segments of the society. “Subsidy from the national exchequer is aimed at ensuring social and economic uplift in the country,” he said. The prime minister further said that a non-deserving person availing facility of subsidy is a burden on the national exchequer and vowed to bring reforms in the process to eliminate it.
The prime minister also agreed upon the recommendations of the think tank for bringing reforms in the system and said that a road map keeping in view these suggestions should be devised.
Earlier in August, PM Imran Khan had said that the government was taking all-out measures to make the subsidy system more transparent, effective, and targeted. Presiding over a meeting, PM Imran had issued directives to ensure the effective utilization of subsidies to give maximum relief to lower-income segments of the society. He maintained that fulfilling the requirements of poverty-stricken people was the government’s top priority.
Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Social Protection and Poverty Alleviation Dr Sania Nishtar, National Database & Registration Authority (NADRA) chairman and finance secretary and other officials had attended the meeting.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan on Monday categorically said that the government will not bow down before any blackmailing tactics. This he stated while expressing his views with the Adviser on Parliamentary Affairs Dr Babar Awan, who called on him at his office in Islamabad.