China, Pakistan may sign framework agreement in JCC moot

BEIJING: China and Pakistan are expected to sign a framework agreement for Industrial Cooperation (IC) during the 10th Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) meeting on China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPECT), scheduled to be held via video-link this month.

Both countries have already signed MoU on industrial cooperation and now in the upcoming meeting of JCC, it is likely to be taken to next level, China Economic Net (CEN) reported on Monday.

JCC is the highest decision-making body of CPEC, which is co-chaired by Pakistan’s Minister for Planning, Development & Special Initiatives and chairman of China’s National Development and Reforms Commission (NDRC).

To implement the CPEC project, China and Pakistan have set up a ministerial-level Joint Cooperation Committee on CPEC Long Term Planning. Initially, there were 7 joint working groups (JWGs) under JCC, namely planning, energy, transportation infrastructure, Gwadar Port, industrial cooperation, social-economic development and international cooperation. Later two more JWG on Agriculture and Science and Technology were included.

JCC is responsible for overall planning and coordination under CPEC, while the JWGs are responsible for the detailed planning and implementation of the projects.

The JCC secretariats are established in the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) of China and Ministry of Planning, Development and Reforms of Pakistan respectively. The two secretariats are responsible for communicating and coordinating with the line ministries, related to the projects of CPEC. Until now, JCC has convened nine meetings and since 2015 it is held on an annual basis.

In connection with the 10th JCC meeting, KPK has proposed mega-projects of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in energy and power, tourism, agriculture, road, industry and social sectors to be presented to the 10th JCC meeting for consideration.

These proposed projects include Peshawar to D.I.Khan Motorway, Chashma Right Bank Canal, Swat Expressway Phase 2, Dir Expressway, Chakdara to Chitral Expressway, Chitral to Shandoor Road, Kumrat Cable Car, Peshawar Circular Rail, Daraban Economic Zone, Mori Kari Hydel Power Project, 500 KV transmission line from Chital to Chakdara etc.

It was informed on this occasion that all the necessary arrangements had been completed for the groundbreaking of Rashakai Economic Zone under CPEC, and so far 700 applications have been received for setting up industries in the economic zone.

A CPEC major project ML-I is also likely to see the light of the day in the 10th JCC meeting.

Meanwhile, as many as 18 projects worth around Rs 83 billion, have been identified in the agriculture sector under the CPEC project to exploit its potential and modernize it for sustainable economic growth.

These projects are likely to be tabled in the 10th JCC meeting. About twelve short, medium and long-term projects identified by the China-Pakistan Joint Working Groups (JWG) are related to Livestock Wing, Ministry of National Food Security and Research (MNFS&R) and Livestock and Dairy Development Department, six projects are related to research and development to be executed by Pakistan Agricultural Research Council while one project has been identified for the establishment of Aquaculture Park in Coastal Areas of Pakistan.—APP