Islamabad: Pakistan and China signed an agreement for the construction of $1.5 billion Azad Pattan Hydel Power Project, Chairman CPEC Authority Asim Saleem Bajwa said on Monday.
Prime Minister Imran Khan witnessed the signing ceremony.
The Prime Minister said at the ceremony that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project will prove to be a milestone in the country’s development and prosperity.
“The CPEC is the future of Pakistan.”
The Prime Minister further stated that time will prove the long-term benefits of the China-Pakistan Economic Cooperation Plan, which is based on economic cooperation between Pakistan and China.
He said that with Pakistan’s rapid rise as a world economic power, Pakistan can learn a lot from China in the field of economic development and prosperity.
He expressed optimism that they will learn from China’s experience in the future. He said that CPEC is at different stages and has bright spots of prosperity and progress in all aspects.
Regarding the signing of the agreement, Prime Minister Imran said that this is part of the completion of investment in clean energy-based power projects.
He said that unlike in the past, the project will not burden the people, and mentioned the previous expensive projects of the government. These projects use imported fuel to operate, which increases the total cost of energy and puts pressure on the local currency.
The Prime Minister said that due to these policies, the power industry suffered losses that affected consumers.
He regrets that the country cannot compete with its neighbors in generating low-cost energy.
He said that hydropower is considered an important source of clean energy, which is also in line with his government’s “clean and green Pakistan” policy and is considered environmentally friendly.
At the same time, Lieutenant General Bajwa said that through this large-scale project, 3,000 jobs will be created, which will bring Punjab and Azad Kashmir’s annual water revenue to Rs 1.38 billion.
He added, “With an investment of $1.5 billion, no fuel import, we are moving towards cheaper and greener power.”