Ex-chief economist hits out at  Pakistan min

Adviser to PM alleges foul play by media after CPEC statement

Islamabad : Former Chief Economist of Pakistan Dr Pervez Tahir hit out at Pakistan Cabinet Minister Abdul Razak Dawood, days after he cried foul for being misconstrued by the media, when he said, “Islamabad is rethinking its role in China’s Belt and Road plan”.

Dawood made the statement during an interview with London-based news paper, Financial Times.

In an opinion piece titled ‘In and out of context’, published in Pakistan Daily, The Express Tribune, Tahir said the adviser to the PM on commerce and textile, alleged foul play by the media, after his statement on the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was questioned by the influentials in his party.

“To prove that he could not just go after the minuscule Utility Stores Corporations, but also mega initiatives like CPEC, Razzak Dawood chose the Financial Times. He repeated, within quotes, all that the detractors of One Belt One Road and CPEC say ad infinitum. When confronted by the influentials of the ruling party, he came out with the explanation that he was quoted out of context,” said Tahir.

Tahir asserted Dawood’s statement had the ability to harm the Sino-Pak relations and cost Islamabad huge amount of foreign investment. “The context is clear to all except the adviser. The US Secretary of State had unequivocally warned against deploying a possible IMF programme to repay the CPEC loans. Other Western countries have misgivings about the rising economic clout of China,” Tahir said.

“China’s foreign minister was in town to renew the game-changing economic relationship with the new government in Pakistan. Before any discussion began, the adviser threw the bombshell of enforcing a one-year long pause in the execution of CPEC projects. Make no mistake. The adviser’s statement was part of this context, not out of context,” he added.

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