Mir Hasil Bizenjo, Minister for Ports and Shipping, revealed to the senate that Pakistan will get only 9 percent of total revenues from Gwadar Port. The remaining 91 percent will go to China over the course of next 40 years as per the agreement signed between the two countries. Senators also raised their concerns over this substantial imbalance of asset sharing with China getting the most out of it.
The numbers were made public after senators pressurized government for keeping the long-term agreement terms secret.
The terms of agreement were criticised by not only opposition but by government’s own members. Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz’s (PML-N) Senator Kalsoom Pervaiz indicated that agreement should have been signed on an equal basis.
She further demanded Raza Rabbani, Chairperson Senate, that a separate committee on this matter be established. In response, Chairperson rejected her proposal saying two committees on CPEC have already been established and advised her to present her issues before those committees.
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) was also not happy with the distribution of revenues between Pakistan and China. Senator Mohsin Aziz of PTI pointed out that businessmen, instead of bureaucrats, should have been the ones formulating the agreement between the two countries.
Criticising the structure of CPEC committees, Sardar Azam Musakhel, senator of Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP), said that none of the committees of CPEC have a chairman from Balochistan, while Gwadar Port lies in Balochistan province. He further objurgated government saying that authorities are handing out undue favors to China.
Mir Hasil and Senator Javed Abbasi of PML-N were among the defenders of the Gwadar Port agreement. Mir Hasil said that the agreement follows build-operate and transfer model. Meaning that Pakistan will have full authority over the port and any infrastructure that will be built upon it.
Senator Javed stressed that the investment of $56 billion by China in CPEC is greatly in Pakistan’s interest. He elaborated that many power projects will be initiated along CPEC that will bring down country’s energy crisis. Along with that many industrial zones will be established that will help decrease the unemployment rate in the country.
On distribution of the power projects, senator told that most of these will be built in Sindh and Balochistan.