Pakistan Invites Chinese Investment in Mineral Processing

Deputy Prime Minister Ishaq Dar invites Chinese companies to establish mineral processing plants in Balochistan, Pakistan. The move aims to produce value-added products for domestic consumption and export to China, following a surge in copper exports from Pakistan to China.

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Bijay Laxmi
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Pakistan Invites Chinese Investment in Mineral Processing

Pakistan Invites Chinese Investment in Mineral Processing

Deputy Prime Minister Ishaq Dar has extended an invitation to Chinese companies to establish mineral processing plants in Balochistan, Pakistan. The objective is to produce value-added products for both domestic consumption and export to China.

Why this matters: This development has significant implications for Pakistan's economic growth and its bilateral relationship with China, and it could pave the way for increased investment and cooperation in the mineral sector. As Pakistan seeks to diversify its economy and reduce its reliance on traditional industries, the success of this initiative could have a ripple effect on the country's overall development trajectory.

This invitation comes on the heels of a substantial increase in copper exports from Pakistan to China, which surged from $132 million in 2018 to an impressive $1.22 billion in 2022. The sevenfold growth in copper exports over just four years highlights the immense potential for further collaboration between the two nations in the mineral sector.

The Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC) is set to convene a meeting on May 14, 2024, under the leadership of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. The agenda will encompass various issues, with a particular focus on the mining sector. Key topics for discussion include updates on the Reko Diq project, harmonization of the regulatory framework, and performance reviews of federal and provincial mineral sector entities.

The timeline for the performance review of Federal and Provincial mineral sector entities is slated for June 2024. Additionally, an update on the Human Resource Plan for the Mineral Sector and a performance audit of the Geological Survey of Pakistan are expected to be presented in April 2024.

Pakistan and China have a long-standing history of economic cooperation, with China being one of Pakistan's largest trading partners and a significant source of foreign investment. The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a flagship project of China's Belt and Road Initiative, has further strengthened the bilateral relationship between the two countries.

Deputy Prime Minister Ishaq Dar's invitation to Chinese companies to invest in mineral processing plants in Balochistan underscores Pakistan's commitment to leveraging its natural resources for economic growth and development. The establishment of such plants would not only create employment opportunities but also contribute to the country's export earnings and foreign exchange reserves.

Key Takeaways

  • Pakistan invites Chinese companies to establish mineral processing plants in Balochistan.
  • Objective is to produce value-added products for domestic consumption and export to China.
  • Copper exports from Pakistan to China surged from $132m to $1.22b between 2018 and 2022.
  • Special Investment Facilitation Council to meet on May 14, 2024, to discuss mining sector issues.
  • Establishment of mineral processing plants to create jobs and boost export earnings.