Chinese President Xi Jinping has ended a visit to Pakistan after signing $45 billion worth of investment agreements in the South Asian nation.
NPR's Philip Reeves tells our Newscast unit that Xi's visit is being seen as a "game changer." Here's more from him:
"This trip marks a step forward in China's grand plan for securing new and more direct routes to the energy resources and markets of the Middle East, Africa and Europe. This includes creating a corridor running from western China down through Pakistan to its southern port of Gwadar on the Arabian Sea."
Of the $45 billion in investments, up to $37 billion would be spent on Pakistan's electrical grid, said Ahsan Iqbal, the country's minister for planning and development; $28 billion worth of projects were ready to be rolled out, he said, according to The Associated Press.
But as NPR's Reeves adds: "The challenge now is making these [projects] happen. The corridor passes through an area where there's a separatist insurgency. Ambitious plans and promises have fizzled out in the past. That's why much emphasis was placed during President Xi's visit on security cooperation."
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