Brussels : China is concerned about the impact of Pakistan’s rampant corruption on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), according to a leading European expert on South Asian affairs.
Dr. Siegfried O. Wolf, a senior researcher at the South Asia Institute of Heidelberg University and Director of Research at South Asia Democratic Forum, a Brussels-based think tank, said in an interview that endemic corruption in the civilian and the military establishment in Pakistan and the flourishing culture of impunity for criminal activities in that country if not stopped, would severely affect the smooth and effective functioning of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects.
Dr. Wolf said, “One has to be aware that if the country would have more transparency and accountability in political decision-making and their respective implementation in general, and an effective system of taxation and the habit of paying electricity bills in particular, the country would not be in such desperate need for foreign capital (from China). If these basic challenges are not addressed, many CPEC projects, will be not sustainable, and will add to the external debts in an unprecedented manner.”
When asked whether the multi-billion dollar CPEC would be impacted should the Nawaz Sharif government fall, Dr. Wolf said such a scenario would ensure greater military control over the CPEC.