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Pakistan to increase GDP
December 28, 2017
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ISLAMABAD: The enhanced power generation capacity, resulting from China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects, is expected to add two percentage points to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the medium to long-term in Pakistan, an official said on Wednesday.

“All the energy projects are aimed at adding 17,045 Megawatts (MW) to mitigate chronic electricity shortfall and provide a reliable support for domestic economic activities and exports,” an official at Planning, Development and Reforms Division said.

The sources added that out of $47 billion CPEC portfolio, the bulk, around $35 billion, would go into energy projects, whereas $12 billion was to be spent on roads and other infrastructure projects.

“The CPEC transport infrastructure projects -roads, railways, port facility upgrade- will allow easier and low cost access to domestic and overseas markets, promoting inter-regional and international trade,” the official said.

The services exports, the source informed, would also benefit from increased trade traffic from China, while establishment of Special Economic Zones (SEZ) alongside the CPEC routes would also facilitate domestic and foreign investment.

“These SEZs will have a multiplier effect on growth via connectivity to other regions, accessibility to markets, job creation, etc,” the source said and added this will also help in integrating less developed areas into folds of active development.

Large-scale manufacturing (LSM) in Pakistan posted a growth of 8.77 per cent in October after a paltry expansion in September, according to latest data from the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS).

It grew 8.5 per cent in August and 13 per cent in July. The government has projected 6.3 per cent expansion target in the big industry production for this fiscal year. In 2016-17, it grew 5.6 per cent.

On year-on-year basis, the LSM grew 9.64 per cent in the first five months of 2017-18.

LSM constitutes 80 per cent share within manufacturing and 10.7 per cent in overall GDP. Contrary to this, small-scale manufacturing accounts for 1.8 per cent in GDP and 13. per cent within manufacturing.

Meanwhile China and Pakistan will look at extending their $57 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor to Afghanistan, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Tuesday, part of China’s ambitious Belt and Road plan linking China with Asia, Europe and beyond.

Speaking after the first trilateral meeting between the foreign ministers of China, Pakistan and Afghanistan, Wang said China hoped the economic corridor could benefit the whole region and act as an impetus for development.

Afghanistan has urgent need to develop and improve people’s lives and hopes it can join inter-connectivity initiatives, Wang told reporters, as he announced that Pakistan and Afghanistan had agreed to mend their strained relations.

“So China and Pakistan are willing to look at with Afghanistan, on the basis of win-win, mutually beneficial principles, using an appropriate means to extend the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor to Afghanistan,” he added.

How that could happen needs the three countries to reach a gradual consensus, tackling easier, smaller projects first, Wang said, without giving details.

Internews

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