Focus: GS-II International Relations
Why in news?
China under the multi-billion-dollar China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will set up a 1,124-megawatt power project in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir despite India’s objection to it.
- A tripartite agreement has been finalised among China’s Three Gorges Corporation, the authorities in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) and the PPIB to implement the 1,124-megawatt Kohala hydroelectric power project under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) framework.
- The project will be built on the Jhelum River and aims at annually providing more than five billion units of clean and low-cost electricity for consumers in Pakistan.
- The paper further reported that this marks one of the largest investments of USD 2.4 billion in an independent power producer (IPP) in the region.
India’s Protests against such Projects
- The CPEC passes through PoK, over which India has conveyed its protests to China.
- In May 2020, India protested to Pakistan awarding a mega contract to build a dam in Gilgit-Baltistan, saying carrying out of such projects in territories under Pakistan’s illegal occupation was not proper.
China–Pakistan Economic Corridor
- China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is a collection of infrastructure projects that are under construction throughout Pakistan since 2013.
- CPEC is intended to rapidly upgrade Pakistan’s required infrastructure and strengthen its economy by the construction of modern transportation networks, numerous energy projects, and special economic zones.
- On 13 November 2016, CPEC became partly operational when Chinese cargo was transported overland to Gwadar Port for onward maritime shipment to Africa and West Asia.
- A vast network of highways and railways are to be built under the aegis of CPEC that will span the length and breadth of Pakistan.
- CPEC passes through the disputed region of Kashmir where Indian and Pakistani border guards have occasionally exchanged fire across the Line of Control. The Government of India, which shares tense relations with Pakistan, objects to the CPEC project as upgrade works to the Karakoram Highway are taking place in Gilgit Baltistan; territory that India claims as its own.