Pakistani Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood described the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) as a transformational project and said there is a complete national consensus on CPEC’s indispensability for the country’s development efforts.

Pakistan and China are firmly committed to the timely completion of CPEC projects and making it a high-quality demonstration project of the Belt & Road Initiative, Mahmood said at a meeting with CPEC Authority Chairman Asim Saleem Bajwa, according to a late Monday statement by the Pakistani Foreign Ministry.

Reviewing the progress of CPEC projects, Mahmood said that CPEC energy and infrastructure projects have created thousands of jobs and had boosted industrial growth and productivity.

“It testified to the fact that CPEC’s contribution to strengthening Pakistan’s economic landscape has been real and substantial,” the official emphasized.

The foreign secretary underlined that Pakistan’s focus in the next phase of CPEC is on industrialization and socio-economic development, areas that will create vast job and growth opportunities for the common people, adding that the government particularly focuses on strengthening agricultural cooperation between Pakistan and China.

According to the statement, the two officials reaffirmed that through collective efforts of China and Pakistan, CPEC would become the hub for regional trade and connectivity and will deepen people-to-people exchanges at a wider level.

Bajwa on the occasion underscored that the CPEC Authority is committed to ensuring that CPEC projects are completed on time and Pakistan is mulling a mechanism that could encourage the inflow of Chinese investments to Pakistan.