Report Launch Event- March 10, 2020
“CPEC projects will unleash opportunities for socio-economic development for people of Azad Jammu & Kashmir. Government of AJ&K is making all efforts to ensure that CPEC projects in the region are implemented without any delays”, stated Raja Farooq Haider, Prime Minister of Azad Jammu & Kashmir at the Report Launch Event at the Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI).
China-Pakistan Study Centre (CPSC) at ISSI in collaboration with Center for Peace, Development & Reforms (CPDR) organized Launch of a Report titled “CPEC in Azad Jammu & Kashmir: A Gateway to Regional Connectivity & Beyond” on March 10, 2020. Authored by Sabur Ali Sayyed and published by CPDR, the report provides a comprehensive overview of the CPEC projects in AJ&K, including Karot and Kohala hydropower projects, construction of M4 motorway, and a Special economic Zone at Mirpur.
Ambassador Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry, Director General ISSI, in his remarks underlined that economic development of AJK region is a priority for Pakistan despite various challenge. Timely completion of CPEC projects will lead to enhanced connectivity and socio-economic development in AJK.
Mr. Sabur Ali Sayyid, author of the report highlighted key takeaways from his research. He provided overview of the on-going CPEC projects in the AJK region. He recommended that now focus should be on advocacy of CPEC, non-politicisation, and addressing concerns of local communities related to the projects.
Prime Minister Haider highlighted key socio-development indicators of the AJK region and the work being undertaken by the government to improve education standard and provision of quality health-care in the region. He noted that CPEC will supplement AJK’s socio-economic development as tremendous human capital of AJK is its biggest asset.
Mr. Zulfiqar Abbasi, President CPDr, Dr. Syed Asif Hussain, Additional Chief Secretary Government of AJ&K, and Mr. Hasan Daud Butt, Chief Executive KP Board of Investment & Trade reviewed the report and shared their thoughts.
Earlier, Dr. Talat Shabbir, Director CPSC, in his introductory remarks commended the author for producing a high-quality report that highlight economic potential of AJK and opportunities for connectivity under the CPEC initiative. Ambassador Khalid Mahmood, Chairman Board of Governors ISSI, also reiterated importance of CPEC for socio-economic development of AJK and Pakistan while delivering vote of thanks.