Even before CPEC, Pakistan and China shared good terms when it came to economics and politics. With the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project those ties only grew stronger. CPEC holds tremendous amounts of opportunities for both countries to grow and develop.
One of those opportunities is the increase in jobs. When the Quaid-e-Azam Solar Power Park Bahawalpur, the largest solar power plant, was installed, it not only generate the cleanest and the most reliable source of energy for Pakistan but also increased employment. This unique solar project has been declared as the largest solar electricity producer in Pakistan. In total 30,000 direct job opportunities were created in infrastructure and power sectors due to the investments made by China. There’s also the huge economic benefit from the Gwadar project. The fact that China is investing $4.8 Billion in developing Gwadar will make this city the busiest shipping port in South Asia by 2022 and will become the key city of trade for the continent, linking China with markets in Central and South Asia.
For these reasons as well as the projects undertaken by CPEC, there was a 2.5% projected annual growth for Pakistan in 2016. There are also special economic zones implemented where companies can enjoy business incentives and tax holidays to development and encourage investment from industries around the world. These zones can be found on the outskirts of large cities in Pakistan such as Faisalabad, Islamabad, Mirpur, Nowshera, Karachi, and Gilgit.
Central to the CPEC project is the investments made in rail and road networks. The Lahore Line metro train, which will connect the vast city of Lahore from one end of the city to the other end, will drastically improve Pakistan’s infrastructure and will allow 250,000 passengers to commute on a daily basis. The Karakoram highway, a 120k highway that connects Thakot and Havelian in KPK (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) is being considered to be a major highway that would establish a foundation of networks from the north to the south and is expected to be complete in the first quarter of 2020.