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China, Pakistan 'all weather friendship' face cracks as Beijing turning away big ticket investments in Islamabad

ANI | Updated: Nov 14, 2021 02:48 IST

Beijing [China], November 14 (ANI): The so-called "all-weather friendship" between Pakistan and China seems to be shaken as several instances of Islamabad being humiliated at the hands of Beijing including the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and telecommunication tower belonging to China Mobile Pakistan (CMPak), said a report.
Sergio Restelli in Times of Israel said that cracks seem to have surfaced in the 'higher than mountains', 'deeper than oceans', between Pakistan and China, despite both the countries tout their friendship as unprecedented but the situation on the ground depicts it otherwise.
"The 62-billion-dollar economic corridor (CPEC) from Kashgar in Xinjiang to Gwadar on the Arabian coast, has been hailed as people of Pakistan thought it would bring prosperity and riches for them. But now, it seems the CPEC is turning out to be an albatross around Pakistan's neck. Since the day the deal was signed, questions have been raised about issues like lack of transparency, hidden terms and conditions of the loans offered, influx of Chinese labourers in Pakistan, mounting debt," Sergio said in The Times of Israel.

Adding to the long list of woes for Pakistan arising out of the CPEC, the Chinese government, in the latest development, asked Pakistan to pay 38 million dollars as compensation for deceased Chinese workers and engineers who had died in a bomb blast on July 14, 2021.
Citing media reports on November 5, Sergio said that, a telecommunication tower belonging to China Capital Mobile Pakistan was destroyed in the restive North Waziristan region by explosives. The Pakistan-based mobile data network operator does business under the name of Zong.
He further wrote in Times of Israel that for Pakistan, the noose of a financial burden is getting tighter with each passing day. "China is turning away big ticket investments in Pakistan prompted as much by security concerns as by the delay in returns on investment. China has not yet cleared funding for three major highway projects (210 km Dera Ismail Khan - Zhob road, 110 km Khuzdar - Basima Road and 136 km Raikot to Thakot portion of Karakoram Highway). The delay means cost escalation for Pakistan but the Chinese government is unmoved for the past three years citing charges of blatant corruption," he said.
He noted that it is high time Pakistan realises that Beijing is only exploiting its friend 'all weather' to further its strategic geopolitical goals. (ANI)