An article regarding CPEC was circulating around different international media outlets in which the writer said that the, “IMF can’t stop Pakistan from becoming the next SriLanka.” The Spokesperson for China Pakistan Economic Corridor, Ministry of Planning Development and Reform, Hassan Daud said that, “ The article is based on incorrect data and distorted facts. The writer needs to know that CPEC is the flagship project of the Belt and Road initiative.”
He added that the projects under CPEC are of different natures, there are projects that are Government to Government and others are related to the private sector. He added that there are currently 22 projects being implemented, worth $28 billion.
He clarified that $22 billion worth of projects are under the private sector and hence there is no liability of debt of these projects on the Government of Pakistan.
He said that the $22 billion worth of projects are Energy projects that are being conducted purely on Independent Power Producers (IPPs) mode and the loans are taken by private companies on their own risk and that puts no liability on the government of Pakistan.
He said that the government has the liability of only $5.8 billion worth of projects. He added that the loans for these projects are being provided on 20-25 years payback period on low-interest rates.
Hence, the impression given in the article that Pakistan is getting in a debt trap is not correct.
The article also said that, “CPEC will add to corruption.” Answering to this the minister said that the writer is not aware that the second phase of CPEC is focused on industrial cooperation, socio-economic development and agricultural cooperation that aims to improve the poverty situation in Pakistan and the projects will be executed with due diligence on both sides.
He said that CPEC in Pakistan cannot be compared with any other project in a different country, as it aims to overcome crucial energy deficits, improve transport infrastructure and improve supply chain bottlenecks.