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KARACHI: “We need to focus on three Is — institution, infrastructure and investment,” said Dr Tanveer Ahmed Qureshi, Director General Sindh Board of Investment, while speaking about the per capita GDP being $1,400 while the market size of Pakistan comprises 220 million consumers.

He was speaking at a seminar titled ‘Sindh at the crossroad of success through CPEC’ aimed at clearing up misconceptions about the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and also explaining its various aspects.

Held at the Institute of Sustainable Halophyte Utilisation (ISHU), University of Karachi (KU) on Thursday, Dr Qureshi said that Karachi was the backbone of the financial structure of Pakistan since it has two seaports making it a gateway to Central Asia, Africa, Europe and China. He also discussed the special economic zones situated in Khairpur, Bin Qasim, Korangi Creek, Dhabeji, Keti Bandar, etc.

“Pakistan will benefit from investing in transport, energy and industrial sector,” he added. “CPEC will not act as a concrete game changer alone. It will bring opportunities for the common people who can then grab them and change the game themselves.”

Former federal secretary Fazlullah Qureshi spoke about the railway and sea routes covered by CPEC and their influence on development and improvement of the routes. He mentioned various power projects and transport infrastructure projects including 10 transport projects out of which only two are in Sindh.

“Sindh is a like a surrogate mother, producing power from Thar coal and Bin Qasim, that is being utilised by Punjab,” he said.

He talked about the scarcity of quality water available to the people of a province that is producing 70 per cent of the total revenue for Pakistan. “Why can’t we divert resources in the social sector? Where does the common man of Sindh lie?” he asked.

He added that CPEC will prove to be a great and historic milestone in the history of Pakistan-China relations, which will not only bring extensive job opportunities to the locals but also bring development in the underdeveloped areas of the country, especially Balochistan and Sindh.

Published in Dawn, April 7th, 2017