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ISLAMABAD: Apropos a story titled “CPEC master plan revealed” appearing in Dawn on May 15, Minister for Planning, Development and Reform Ahsan Iqbal has said that CPEC’s Long Term Plan is not a project document, rather it “delineates the aspirations of both sides”.

Read: What is CPEC's master plan?

“It is a live document and both sides [China and Pakistan] have an understanding to modify it as per the need besides reviewing it periodically,” Mr Iqbal claimed on Monday.

While describing the news item as “one-sided and factually incorrect”, he said it was based on a “redundant document”.

He did not elaborate on what was factually incorrect in the story.

Explaining the process, the minister said that China Development Bank (CDB) and National Deve­lopment and Reform Commission (NDRC) study referred to as Long Term Plan (LTP) was basically meant for consultations only. “Pakistani side has developed a Transport Monographic Study to complement the CDB and NDRC work. Afterwards, the two sides mutually developed an abridged version, which was shared with all provinces, concerned ministries and departments and their input on LTP was sought.”

Mr Iqbal said that input from the stakeholders was incorporated in the LTP after an extensive consultative process and final version was shared with the cabinet and the Prime Minister’s Office.

LTP has been approved by the cabinet and shared with the Chinese side for developing a mutual agreement on it.

“Any version of Long Term Plan prior to the approved abridged version stands redundant and irrelevant,” he said.

However, the minister did not say why only an abridged version was shared with the stakeholders, and whether the final draft taken up with NDRC in Beijing on Monday will be made public.

Published in Dawn, May 16th, 2017