ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and China have decided to finalise next month high priority projects planned to be implemented under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reform Ahsan Iqbal will lead a delegation to China to finalise these projects at a meeting to be held in Beijing on July 7-8.

High priority projects are those that the government wants to complete before its term ends in 2018.

A meeting was held at the Planning Commission on Friday to finalise the agenda for talks to be held in China. The meeting, also attended by Energy adviser Musaddiq Malik and special assistant to prime minister Tariq Fatemi, was briefed on progress in various projects. The CPEC projects that came under discussion were Karachi-Lahore Motorway, Multan-Sukkur Motorway, East-Bay Gwadar Port Expressway, Lahore Metro Train [Orange Line], infrastructure development for Export Processing Zones Authority and Gwadar Industrial Estate Develop-ment Authority, rehabilitation and up-gradation of Karachi-Lahore-Peshawar railway track and coal-based power projects [IPPs] and other projects at Gadani jetty.

The planning minister directed the authorities concerned to finalise financing agreements with the Chinese government so that work on projects could be undertaken without delay.

He asked them to set up project management offices in ministries for speedy execution of projects, adding that CPEC would be a game changer for the region.

Published in Dawn, June 28th , 2014