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PM decides to resume work on CPEC projects

  • April 3, 2020
PM decides to resume work on CPEC projects
Image caption PM decides to resume work on CPEC projects

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday ordered a relief package specifically for the construction industry and directed resumption of all China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) related infrastructure and energy projects.

The package for construction industry will be unveiled today (Friday).

The premier also directed formation of a Codal Research Committee (CRC) for devising an action plan that would allow the centre and provinces to jointly deal with Covid-19’s brunt on the country’s economy.

The decisions were taken in two separate meetings held to assess the impact of the pandemic on economy and common man.

During a meeting, Minister for Planning and Development Asad Umar apprised the prime minister about steps being taken for better coordination between provinces and the centre to combat Covid-19, revival of construction industry, CPEC projects and food security.

Another relief package to be announced today

“The relief package will also support the uplift of other industries allied with the construction sector,” PM Khan said.

He added that the construction of road infrastructure will not pose any danger regarding spread of coronavirus. The PM further said a Standard Operating Procedure (SOPs) was being devised about how the construction industry and its related sectors will work the during lockdown. “SOPs will also be made for the safety of the workers,” he added.

The primer said the Ministry of Commerce has compiled a list of industries which will operate during countrywide lockdown.

In a separate event, PM distributed tax refund cheques to businessmen. He said these were part of the relief his government is giving to keep industry afloat.

A press release issued by the Prime Minister Office (PMO), quoted the PM as saying: “A Codal Research Committee (CRC) should be formed to give suggestions to the National Coordination Committee in its next meeting regarding different sectors and how these could perform during prevailing lockdown situation.”

The prime minister expressed satisfaction over the government’s arrangements to combat Covid-19.

Chairing a meeting on energy, he directed the ministry concerned to accelerate reforms in the energy sector by removing systemic hurdles and effectively utilising the limited resources for ensuring relief to the common man.

Minister for Energy Omar Ayub, Finance Adviser Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, Commerce Adviser Abdul Razak Dawood, Special Assistant to the PM on Petroleum Nadeem Babar and senior officers of ministries attended the meeting.

ISLAMABAD – Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that the medical equipment provided by China will greatly strengthen Pakistan’s capacity to handle COVID-19 pandemic. Talking to Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing here yesterday, he expressed sincere gratitude to China for supporting Pakistan in helping contain COVID-19, reports Gwadar Pro App on Wednesday.

Pakistan has recently received tons of protective gear and testing kits from China to contain the spread of coronavirus. The continuing and unprecedented assistance from China via air and road comes at a critical time when Pakistan’s medical workers struggle to treat patients as the number of confirmed cases have surpassed 1700. According to Ambassador Yao Jing, the Chinese government and leadership is committed to support Pakistan in combating COVID-19 as their top priority.

At least two tons of masks, testing kits, ventilators, medical protective clothes worth Rs. 67 million have already been handed over to Pakistani officials at Khunjerab Pass. A plane carrying 50,000 coronavirus testing kits also arrived, and it was the second bulk consignment sent by China’s Alibaba and Jack Ma Foundation within days.

The foundation also sent 500,000 surgical masks and 50,000 N95 respirators to Pakistan. Following Governor Punjab Chaudhry Sarwar’s request, a Chinese university agreed to work with Pakistani medical experts to convert a university campus into a 1,000-bed field hospital.

The field hospital would be set up in Lahore. The university would also work in collaboration with Pakistani scientists to develop testing kits and other equipments in Pakistan.

Earlier, Managing Director of Challenge Group of Companies Yan Chen from China called on Prime Minister Imran Khan to donate 15,000 protection suits to Pakistani doctors and paramedical staff on the frontline battling the pandemic. To meet the increasing demand for protective gear, China will also help produce the protection suit in Pakistan’s city of Lahore.

China turns from fighting the virus domestically to helping the world. As new cases of COVID-19 in China appear to slow, Beijing offers support to other countries in their respective fights against coronavirus.

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