Quetta: Balochistan can take the maximum advantage of its natural resources by adding valuing to them before selling them out. There will not be much gain for the province if it only sells the raw materials in the market, said Jean-Francois Cautain European Union (EU) Ambassador to Pakistan while talking to a group of journalists, on Tuesday night.
He added that Pak-EU relationship is governed by 5 year plans. Current plan will end in 2017 and a new one will be established immediately afterwards which will not be time bound. “Now EU is entering in a strategic partnership with Pakistan which will be based on mutual trust and understanding.”
Mr. Cautain informed the journalists that in Balochistan EU provides support on Education, Governance and Rural Development in the form of grants.
Out of all EU projects in Pakistan, 25-30 percent are allocated for Balochistan – Jean-Francois Cautain
Listing down the details of EU’s support to Balochistan Mr. Ambassador said that 30 Million Euros would be provided for Balochistan Basic Education Programme (BBEP) and vocational training, 15 million Euros for rural development in 8 districts of Balochistan, 50 million Euros for agriculture and 70 million Euros for Water Projects.
“Out of all EU projects in Pakistan, 25-30 percent are allocated for Balochistan,” He revealed.
“We are also working on improving the capacity of the Balochistan Assembly,” continued Ambassador of EU.
While answering the questions of journalists about China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), Mr. Cautain said that CPEC can only develop Balochistan if it’s planned as such. “Construction of mere highways and Motorways will not result in human development,” he claimed. EU Ambassador expressed his support for CPEC but also warned that keeping all eggs in a basket can prove to be detrimental in the long run.
Construction of mere highways and Motorways will not result in human development – Jean-Francois Cautain
Discussing the trade opportunities between Pakistan and EU countries, Mr. Ambassador clarified that no trade can be brought from EU platform and member countries have to make this decision on their own.
Mr. Cautain also appreciated the resolve of Balochistan Government, which in his words has showed interested in working with EU. “We will keep on supporting Government of Balochistan but will also keep a check on the projects which we are financing.”
Journalists present in the meeting apprised EU ambassador about improving situation in Balochistan in the backdrop of EU. They told Mr. Cautain that an inclusive approach is being adopted gradually in implementation of CPEC projects.
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