Whilst there is an air of general optimism (and some misguided skepticism) surrounding the CPEC, what the general populace is perhaps not cognizant of the auxiliary benefits that the economic corridor will bring. Chief amongst these benefits is the stimulus the CPEC will provide to tourism in the region. The prospects for this upsurge are manifold. The development of highways and rail links has great potential to boost tourism in the region. PTDC Managing Director Abdul Ghafoor recognized this potential by saying that the CPEC will improve the quality of Sino-Pak tourism services. This will have long lasting effects on socio-economic development.
The improved accessibility will make hitherto remote regions like Gilgit-Baltistan more accessible not only to Chinese tourists but those from the world over. Other businesses such as hotels, restaurants, transport, handicrafts, shopping, local recreational resorts and local enterprise will also get be spurred. This will also create thousands of new employment opportunities. With the improved security situation in the country this corridor promises to be a boon for the tourism industry. There will specifically be a large boost for ecotourism in the country, with better facilities and accessibility.
One can hope that the security situation keeps on improving for the Pakistani tourism industry to fully enjoy the fruits of the CPEC.
Official, CPECinfo.com – CPEC. “CPEC to Promote Tourism in Pakistan.” CPEC Latest News, The Express Tribune, 6 Jan. 2018, www.cpecinfo.com/cpec-news-detail?id=NDY2Ng.