Inaugurating the Karachi Nuclear Power Plant Unit-2 (K-2), the premier hailed 70 years of diplomatic relations between the neighboring states
Virtually inaugurating the Karachi Nuclear Power Plant Unit-2 (K-2) on Friday, Prime Minister Imran Khan stressed that Pakistan has much to learn from China, as it has overcome several issues that Islamabad is still working to overcome.
“China has faced problems similar to the ones Pakistan is facing today and we have a lot to learn from them,” he told audiences in Islamabad, Karachi and Beijing. “Pakistan can learn a lot from China on controlling pollution, ending poverty and corruption,” he added.
The prime minister said that the two states were also expanding the scope of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. He said that it was being extended from connectivity and power sector projects to the establishment of economic zones and exchange of agricultural technology.
Khan noted that Pakistan was marking 70 years of diplomatic relations with China on Friday (May 21). “It is a very unique relationship,” he said, emphasizing that it extended to all levels of society and governance. “We are confident that China will stand with us during difficult times. It is fortunate for us that Pakistan has strong ties with an emerging power and a developed country such as China,” he said and hoped that people-to-people contacts would increase in the days to come.
He said that that the project will help to train manpower and facilitate technology transfer from China, adding that 40,000 experts visited the country over an extended period of time. “This is another area of cooperation with China.”
Of the K-2 project, Khan said the project established through Pakistan-China cooperation would generate 1,100MW of clean energy. “This is important for us because Pakistan is among the top 10 countries at risk due to climate change,” he said, adding that glaciers supply 80 percent of Pakistan’s water needs. “[The] glaciers are melting at a rapid speed, and our coming generations will face an acute water shortage as well as food security issues if the effects of climate change are not reversed,” he warned and lamented that Pakistan had not tried to use renewable resources for producing electricity. “Unfortunately, we have not focused on producing energy from water despite the country having the potential to do so,” he added.
Following the premier’s speech, the chairman of the China Atomic Energy Authority told the audience that China and Pakistan had been extending support to each other and cooperating in various fields. He said the two countries have also been cooperating in the peaceful use of nuclear energy and hoped that bilateral cooperation would further expand in the future.
Construction of the K-2 plant commenced in November 2013. It has 60-year life expectancy, extendable by 20 more years. It is designed with higher plant availability and capacity factors, and an extended refueling cycle.