CPEC (China-Pakistan Economy Corridor) is one of the mega project that consist of highways, railways and pipelines. CPEC is a 3,218 kilometer long route, to be built over next several years. CPEC will transfer Pakistan into a regional economic hub and it will boost the confidence of investors not only from China but also from other parts of the world. CPEC will also provide telecommunications and energy infrastructure to Pakistan to overcome the power crisis.
The CPEC project has been divided into phases, the first phase being the completion of Gawadar International Airport and major developments of Gawadar Port. This phase is expected to be completed by the year 2017. The project also includes the expansion of Karakoram Highway- the road that connects China with Pakistan and placement of fibre optics line ensuring better communication between the two countries. CPEC is lucrative for and make conspicuous effect on tourism industry in Pakistan.
Furthermore reinforced roads, infrastructure and pipelines will make the pure tourist spots accessible. With more of the feasibilities, there will be a massive increase in the visitor to explore the spectacular landscapes. Proactively the Government of Azad Jammu and Kashmir has declared to make a tourism corridor in the valley. This Rs. 22 billion project is part of the CPEC. Pakistan is home of most stunning Himalayan peaks, including K-2 and various magnificent valleys. It has beautiful Arabian Sea, deserts, Indus valley, ancient Buddha’s civilisation carved in its mountains and historic forts. With all this it is supposed to be one of the world’s greatest tourist destinations.
Development of CPEC will lead to development of infrastructure, which will also positively impact the tourism in Pakistan. As Pakistan is full of natural beauty of Swat, Naran, Kaghan, Murree, Deosai etc. As more and new infrastructure of railways and roads will be developed it will not only enhance the trade but also boast the other things such as employment, tourism, development of rural areas and connection of rural areas to urban parts.
Extracting from different references Gilgit Baltistan is the hub of tourism industry in Pakistan and attract millions of local and outland tourist. 2.5 million Tourists both domestic and international travelled to northern areas in Pakistan last year, tourism which is an important industry that will also see an immense boost as a result of CPEC in Pakistan. Pakistan has the range of some of the highest mountains in the world, including K2, highly rich in landscape, mountains, glaciers, lakes, and valleys, and also boasts another five peaks above 8,000 meters, in addition to the more than 50 other mountains over 7,000 meters.
Mountaineers from around the globe will flock to Pakistan as soon as CPEC is operational.
Hence as a concluding fact it can be said that CPEC will open doors to immense economic opportunities not only to Pakistan but will physically connect China to its markets in Asia, Europe and beyond. It’s a huge project that will lead many different ways for different sector especially on tourism. With improving security situation in the rest of the country and better infrastructure, tourism is expected to grow. CPEC is a worthwhile opportunity for tourism industry of Pakistan.
Ejaz hussain is CEO of Pakistan tour and travel operating in Northern areas of pakistan offering honeymoon Packages from Pakistan in affordable rates with good quality services.