GWADAR, Pakistan, June 4 (Xinhua) — The inauguration ceremony of the China-aided Eastbay Expressway of Gwadar port was held on Friday in Gwadar city of Pakistan’s southwest Balochistan province.
As an important early harvest project under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the 19.49-km expressway was officially started in 2017 by the China Communications Construction Company, with an aim to meet the urgent need of the locals in Gwadar and promote the sustainable development of the area.
Addressing the ceremony, Pakistani Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif thanked China for the grant and said that China has built a very high-quality expressway which links the port to the coastal highway ahead.
It will enhance connectivity and help the transportation of goods from the port all the way to the country’s southern port city of Karachi in the future, said the prime minister.
“Pakistan is determined to speed up the development of Gwadar,” Sharif said, adding that China has donated solar panels to thousands of families in Gwadar, aided the construction of a hospital and other livelihood infrastructures, and will fund a desalination plant.
On the same occasion, Pang Chunxue, charge d’affaires of the Chinese Embassy to Pakistan, said China attaches great importance to people’s livelihood in Gwadar, and is willing to continue promoting the development of Gwadar’s healthcare, education, vocational and technical personnel training and other livelihood fields.
Pang said the construction of the expressway aims to benefit the local people, and the concerns of local fishermen were fully considered in the design and construction.
China will strive to continue to help solve local people’s problems such as shortage of electricity and fresh water, and promote the construction of a smart, green and modern Gwadar Port, so that local people can share the high-quality development of the CPEC, Pang said.
“It is our joint efforts that ensured the successful delivery of this CPEC project in Gwadar.”
“When the New Gwadar International Airport is completed in the future, it will work with the Eastbay Expressway to promote Gwadar as a regional transportation hub and create a better life for the local people,” Pang added.