Highway cooperation between China, Pakistan to make best use of CPEC infrastructure projects: Experts

BEIJING, Oct 17 (Alliance News):: As Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar has kicked off his visit to China ahead of the Third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation to be held in Beijing, a Chinese expert said a reported cooperation between the two countries on fostering highway cooperation is an innovative approach to the construction of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and will bring more benefits to Pakistani people.

During the trip, it is expected that a cooperation agreement will be inked to the establishment of a modern Highway Research & Training Center with Chinese assistance.



Upon completion, the institute will conduct studies of long-term surface performance and research projects in reclaimed asphalt, bridges and tunneling, training and degree courses in China and development of engineering design manuals and standards for Pakistan.
The CPEC is a flagship project under the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative.

Lan Jianxue, director of the Department of Asia-Pacific Studies at China Institute of International Studies, told the Global Times that bilateral cooperation on highway research is an innovative idea as the CPEC enters a new phase of development featuring a broadened scope of cooperation and focuses on socio-economic development, science and technology, agricultural cooperation, and industrialization.

Soft cooperation on highway operation and maintenance with trained Pakistanis taking the lead, will unleash the potential of many of the CPEC infrastructure projects in the years to come and yield concrete benefits to Pakistani people, Lan said.

During a decade of construction, the CPEC has witnessed the completion of sections of the Karakorum Highway (KKH) and the Peshawar-Karachi Motorway and Chinese companies such as CSCEC and China Road & Bridge Corporation took part, building a network of highways and motorways that provided more reliable China-Pakistan connectivity and smoother inland communications within the country.

As of the end of 2022, Chinese companies helped Pakistan add a total of 510 kilometers of new highways, data provided by the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan showed.

Better road traffic will also produce synergy with other infrastructure projects built under the CPEC, such as ports, airports and railways, Lan said.

Such cooperation will be conducive to the planned extension of the CPEC to link up with Central Asian countries in the future, according to the expert.


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