China and Pakistan Road and Belt projects

China has won projects worth $11 billion in Pakistan. This is after an agreement that was signed in the past month to renovate the infrastructure. 

On June 26 and July 6, the two countries sealed the deal for the two projects, which are meant for hydropower production. The first project is in Kashmir, and it is worth $3.9 billion, while the other is the renovation of the colonial-era railways in South Asian, which will cost $7.2 billion. 

Asim Saleem Bajwa was appointed by Khan’s government to be in charge of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Authority last year. The corridor supervises many projects from energy farms to highways, which are worth over $70 billion. 

Mr. Saleem is one of the previous and present army officials to serve in eminent government duties after he was added in the cabinet in April following the military expansion influence in the nation. 

The World Bank aid the construction of various projects such as railways, ports, power plants, roads, among others around the world. These projects are worth over $570 billion since 2013, when the president of China Xi Jinping started the initiative. However, the progress of these projects has decelerated following the allegations that China is enticing less-developed nations into debt tricks for its governmental benefit. 

There is more bother about the capability of the Islamabad in servicing its debts in the ongoing initiative. Pakistan is in the list of eight countries that are unable to sustain its debts due to that program. This is according to a report released last year by the IMF. The IMF said that it is a must for Pakistan to pay back China the amount which is twice in the three years to come. 

Regional conflict

Pakistan and India have engaged in the war three times. The two wars were over the hydro projects in Kashmir, and the other was over terrorist invasion in Kashmir and Jammu last year. 

The construction of the Kohala hydro project, which is worth $2.4 billion, is ongoing in Jhelum River, located in Muzaffarabad, about 62 miles from where the two armies fought. The other project, known as the Azad Pattan, is constructed in the same river, and its total cost is $1.5 billion. 

The Road and Belt programs have put many countries into trouble due to substantial debt loads, corruption, environmental destruction, padded agreement, and China importing laborers instead of hiring the locals. 

There was a renegotiation over the renovation of the British-era legacy railway by the Pakistan government. The country’s railways minister said that the project would cost $6.2 billion, a reduction from the initial cost of $8.2 billion.