Connect with us


CPEC: Internal Pressure, External Threat – Why China’s $60 Billion Investment In Pakistan Is At Risk?



China’s ambitious $62 billion China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is running into trouble with political unrest, massive corruption and the pandemic halting several projects according to various domestic and international reports.

7000-Tonne, Most Lethal Chinese Submarine Type-093A Heightens Tension As It Goes Hunting In The Sea

CPEC has faced a push back in the key areas like Balochistan where the extremist opposition have carried out attacks on the sites of the projects. The militant outfits have been fighting against Pakistan’s exploitation in the resource-rich Balochistan. The Baloch groups say that the provinces of Sindh and Balochistan are hit by China’s “expansionist” and “oppressive” policies that are intended to “subjugate” them. 

From the past number of attacks, analysts believe that these Balochi extremist organizations target the places that are of Chinese interest. The Gwadar port attack where a militant group attacked a convoy of oil and gas workers escorted by paramilitary troops southwestern province of Balochistan and earlier the attack on the Pakistan Stock Exchange in the city of Karachi, where Pakistan sold 40% of the stake of the Stock exchange to a Chinese consortium, points in that direction. 


Round the clock security of Chinese interest sites and personnel leads to an increase in the cost of the projects.

Michael Kugelman, deputy director of the Asia program at the Wilson Center in Washington, told Nikkei Asia that such attacks reinforce the anxieties of Islamabad and Beijing about the security of CPEC projects.

“Beijing has shown a willingness — not just in Pakistan, but in other volatile areas of the world as well — to tolerate a fair amount of risk when making investments in insecure spaces,” he said.

To woo the critics of the project in the region, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan announced a mega development project in the region. However, questions have been raised about how these projects will be financed given Pakistan’s cash-strapped government. 

Pakistan is seeking a $2.7 billion loan from China for phase-1 of the Main Line 1 (ML-1), the biggest project under CPEC worth $6.8 billion under which a 2,655-kilometer railway line will connect Karachi in the South to Peshawar in the North of Pakistan, reported The Express Tribune.

According to the report, the project is facing delays and sources have revealed that the one percent interest rate that Islamabad has proposed has not yet been accepted by the Chinese banks. The Chinese authorities have conveyed that it would be higher than 1 percent. Experts talking to Nikkei Asia said that Beijing is using delaying tactics as it doesn’t want to end up with a bad deal.

Recently Imran Khan’s government has seen a major pushback from 11 opposition parties that have now banded together and formed Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM). Khan is accused of working under military control and for not prioritizing and expediting the “golden economic opportunity” of the Chinese investments, said Asia Times.

In 2018, Khan suspected massive corruption in CPEC projects by previous administrations and had halted several projects. In April this year, an inquiry report, many of his cabinet ministers were named in corruption cases including Khan’s advisors Razak Dawood and Nadeem Baber, Asia Times reported.

The PDM has demanded the removal of CPEC Authority’s chairman, retired Lieutenant General Asim Saleem Bajwa who has been accused of holding offshore assets. Reportedly, the CPEC Authority Ordinance protects the chairman and the staff from legal proceedings against them protecting them from the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and the police to initiate cases against them.

“The CPECA’s legality issue, chairperson’s immunity from legal proceedings and the controversies of overseas family businesses surrounding the authority’s incumbent chairperson gave a bad impression and must be resolved to improve the efficiency of CPECA,” Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed, a Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz leader and chairman of the Pak-China Institute think tank told Asia Times.

“Pressures are emanating from the West and Western institutions – primarily in Washington – against the CPEC but Pakistan has demonstrated willingness, readiness and ability to withstand these pressures,” Mushahid added. 

He added that the CPEC projects are delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic remarking that at least three new projects, two in energy and one in railway renovation were restarted this summer.




Americas6 hours ago

What Is US’ Most Lethal Submarine Killer – The P-8 Poseidon Doing On India-China Border At 15,000 Feet?

US-made Boeing P-8I Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft, also known as ‘Submarine Killer’, has been deployed in Eastern Ladakh near the...

Featured6 hours ago

Indian BrahMos Goes Global; After Indonesia, Brazil Looks To Arms Its Gripen Jets With Indo-Russian Missile

The BrahMos-NG is intended to be a mini-version of the existing BrahMos, being lighter and shorter while still having a...

CHINA-amphibious-aircraft-AG600 CHINA-amphibious-aircraft-AG600
Asia Pacific7 hours ago

Seaplanes Set To Make A Comeback As China Threatens The US With Its Amphibious ‘Fish Dragon’

Decades ago, seaplanes proved their might during World War I for surveillance and reconnaissance. Not just that, seaplanes were later...

eurasian times eurasian times
Featured8 hours ago

Top Iranian Nuclear Scientist Assassinated Near Tehran; Fingers Raised Towards Mossad

A senior scientist linked to the Iranian nuclear program, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh-Mahabadi, was assassinated in Damavand, east of Tehran on Friday,...

indian-air-force indian-air-force
Featured11 hours ago

Third Indian MiG-29 Crashes In A Year – Is It Time To Bid Adieu To Russian Jets & Welcome Western Fighters?

The Indian Navy said on Friday that a MiG-29K trainer aircraft had crashed in the Arabian Sea around 5 pm...

Featured12 hours ago

Modi’s Trillion Dollar Baby: India Bets Big On Its Largest Govt-Funded Project – The Bullet Train

India is gearing up to build its first bullet train corridor covering 508 kilometers between Mumbai and Ahemdabad. The National...

india-russia india-russia
EurAsian Region13 hours ago

India, Russia To Showcase Their Naval Might In Joint Drills In Baltic Sea

The Russian and Indian navies are likely to conduct joint drills in the Baltic Sea sometime next year, according to...

Pakistani-Passport Pakistani-Passport
Featured15 hours ago

UAE Visa Ban Starts To Pinch Pakistan; 3000 Jobs Lost In First Week As Indian Workers Rejoice

OPED By Haider Abbas

Bubonic Plague Bubonic Plague
Americas16 hours ago

As China Slips In The Covid-19 Vaccine Race, Will Russia Eclipse The US & UK To Get The 1st Shot Out?

As the world continues to battle Covid-19, a study on the efficacy of Chinese Sinovac Biotech’s vaccine, published in the...

Featured17 hours ago

#LoveJihad: Democratic India Plans To Combat ‘Love Jihad’ In An Attempt To Control Interfaith Marriages

Hindu right-wing has coined the term “love jihad”, to describe the marriage of a Hindu girl to a Muslim boy....