China-led pro­jects worth $35b to be im­ple­mented in Pak­istan

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - BUSINESS - By BLOOMBERG in Lon­don

More than three quar­ters of $46 bil­lion in planned Chi­nese-led in­vest­ments in Pak­istan will be im­ple­mented by next year as part of the world’s sec­ond-largest econ­omy’s flag­ship Belt and Road Ini­tia­tive.

“Out of this $46 bil­lion, we have been so far able to en­er­gize about $35 bil­lion,” Pak­istan’s Plan­ning, De­vel­op­ment and Re­forms Min­is­ter Ah­san Iqbal said in an in­ter­view in Lon­don.

“By en­er­giz­ing, I mean these are pro­jects ei­ther in ad­vanced im­ple­men­ta­tion or in a stage of fi­nan­cially clos­ing.”

Pak­istan’s Prime Min­is­ter Nawaz Sharif is seek­ing to boost in­fra­struc­ture growth lev­els to their high­est lev­els in about a decade, af­ter China an­nounced its in­vest­ment plans in the na­tion of about 190 mil­lion peo­ple last year. It’s part of an ini­tia­tive the Chi­nese gov­ern­ment calls Belt and Road Ini­tia­tive that aims to re­vive trade across Cen­tral Asia and into Europe via a net­work of rail­ways, ports and high­ways.

About $11 bil­lion has been al­lo­cated to in­fra­struc­ture pro­jects in­clud­ing roads, with con­ces­sional loans pro­vided at about 2 per­cent with pay­back in 20 years, along with a fiveyear grace pe­riod, said Iqbal, who is head­ing the in­vest­ment plans in Pak­istan. The rest has been ear­marked for gen­er­at­ing elec­tric­ity, with about 11,000 megawatts ex­pected to be added by 2018 to end the na­tion’s chronic power out­ages.

In Septem­ber, Iqbal said a fur­ther $8 bil­lion would be pro­vided by China and the Asian De­vel­op­ment Bank to up­date Pak­istan’s di­lap­i­dated rail­way net­work.

XIN­HUA

Em­ploy­ees work at a re­frig­er­a­tor pro­duc­tion plant of Haier Group in La­hore, Pak­istan.

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