China Proposes $58 Billion Railway Project in Pakistan to Reduce Reliance on Western Trade Routes

China has proposed to build its most expensive Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) to date, a $58 billion railway system in Pakistan to reduce the reliance on Western trade routes, according to a research paper commissioned by China earlier this week.

The $57.7 billion ( 400 billion Yuan) plan was reviewed by analysts from the state-owned China Railway First Survey and Design Institute Group Co Ltd. The 1,860-mile rail system will connect Pakistan’s port of Gwadar to the Chinese city of Kashgar in the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region and has the potential to reshape not only trade but also geopolitics.

The Chinese team of analysts said in a report, “The government and financial institutions should provide strong support, increase coordination and collaboration among relevant domestic departments, strive for the injection of support funds and provide strong policy support and guarantees for the construction of this project”.

The same team of analysts has previously assisted with the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed rail line in Indonesia, Asia’s first high-speed rail system, which is set to open in June this year.

In any case, the proposed rail system connecting Pakistan and China will link the world’s largest manufacturer with the Arabian Sea, allowing for more direct trade routes and fruitful macro-exposure to Pakistan’s developing industries. According to the South China Morning Post, it is also expected to encourage additional train systems that could connect China to Turkey and Iran, significantly opening up direct access to the regions.

The trade routes are just one part of Beijing’s larger BRI, which aims to cement China’s position as a world superpower and encourage global trade dominance.

The initiative also seeks to redirect Pakistan’s focus away from trade routes dominated by Western competitors in order to better improve China’s economic goals and perhaps diminish Western power – a move that top autocratic nations such as Russia and Iran have been eager to promote as geopolitical tensions rise.

  • The rail project where it strenghthen SinoPak friendship also benefits both pakistan and china . It will boost pakistan economy pakistanis will benefits from chinese counterpart in technology

  • Yes. Thus we be connected to Europ via Russia-Finland, Russia-Georgia-Turkey.
    Moreover, it would enable Pakistan Railways to convert to Standard Guage to save from train change at Zahedan on Istanbul-Tehran-Islamabad cargo train.
    We shall be able to cargo our commodities to EU and UK directly.
    Moreover, we can connect to Gulf Arab countries ambitious Railway networks especially Makkah by train!!

  • As a nation we have bad luck as we criminals governments for the last 60 years who crippled our nation ,now we have no ability to get benefits from CPEC

  • This will be a good initiative. Better to operate the latest Hyper-loop trains / bullet trains running at more than 800 km/hrs speed. Trains running at a speed of 120 to 160 km will be just waste of money and its out dated technology. Though the most beneficial of this project will be china to do business on these routes. At the end Pakistan has to pay all the loans for it, though beneficial will be china. Pakistan should pay only one fourth of the investment in these projects.

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