Islamabad: President Arif Alvi on Tuesday promulgated an ordinance for the establishment of a 10-member China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Authority that has been tasked for expediting the delayed CPEC projects.
The authority will find new drivers of economic growth, and unlock the potential of interlinked production network and global value chains through regional and global connectivity.
Yesterday, the government forwarded a draft to the president for approval as the decision was taken in rush since no sessions of the National Assembly (NA) and the Senate were being held.
Sources familiar with the matter said that the ordinance will be applicable across Pakistan and the office of the authority will be established in Islamabad.
Prime Minister Imran Khan will appoint the chairperson, executive directors and members of the authority for a period of four years. The chief executive of the authority will be a government officer of Grade-20.
According to the draft, the authority will determine ways to enhance cooperation between Pakistan and China in diverse sectors
Authority will play an active role for effective communication between the Joint Cooperation Committee and the Joint Working Group, and enhance coordination between provinces and ministries.
Furthermore, any decision regarding the projects will be taken by approval of majority of the members and none of the beneficiaries of the CPEC projects will be a member of the authority.
Importantly, the CPEC Authority will operate in accordance with the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Pakistan and China.
The authority will be compelled to submit a financial report of the projects to the prime minister on annual basis, and will be liable to seek any details of the projects.
Moreover, the government will allocate budget for the CPEC and it will be empowered to appoint employees and officers working for the projects.
According to the set rules, it will establish a business council that will guide the authority in achieving its set goals.
The authority, with the approval of the prime minister, will be authorised to formulate new rules and regulations, and will work closely with the ministry of planning.
On Sunday, Minister for Planning, Development and Reform Khusro Bakhtiar denied claims circulating on the media that there had been slowdowns in CPEC projects.
“There’s a speculation that they have become slow; I totally reject it, it’s wrong,” he said.
The minister further mentioned that there would be meaningful engagement on all aspects of Pakistan-China relations during Prime Minister Imran Khan’s visit to China.
He appeared optimistic that it would take CPEC cooperation to new heights so that benefits of Pakistan’s economic progress could reach the people at the earliest.
He explained that PM Khan during his meetings with the president and prime minister of China would take up a number of projects, while technical discussions would follow later this month at the joint working group level and then during the Joint Coordination Committee (JCC) meeting in November.