Read Original Article by Kay Johnson on the Reuters or read just the key points below
- Pakistan signed new deals with China on Saturday worth nearly $500 million ahead of Beijing’s international forum on its “Silk Road” trade and infrastructure initiative for Asia, Africa and Europe, the Pakistani government said.
- The memorandums of understanding add to $57 billion already pledged for the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a network of rail, road and energy infrastructure that is part of the wider Chinese project also known as the Belt and Road initiative, or One Belt, One Road.
- Pakistan has been a flagship country and one of the most enthusiastic supporters of the One Belt-One Road initiative, in part because many projects are for power plants to alleviate the country’s decade-long energy-shortage crisis that sees frequent blackouts.
- Among the 3.4 billion yuan ($492.95 million) in deals Sharif’s signed on Saturday were; Two cooperation agreements worth 2.3 billion yuan for an airport in the southwestern town of Gwadar, Establishment of the Havelian Dry Port in Pakistan and an agreement on economic and technical cooperation worth 1.1 billion yuan.
- Pakistan has expressed an optimistic view, with the government’s chief economist telling Reuters this week that the repayments will peak at around $5 billion in 2022, but will be more than offset by transit fees charged on the new transport corridor.
Learn more about the significance of the Ancient Silk Trade Route in this video.