Beijing, Dec 14: Denying that it demanded ‘full ownership’ to operate the Diamer-Bhasha dam in the disputed Gilgit-Baltistan region, China said talks are underway with Pakistan on the project. The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) rubbished reports that China claimed ownership of the dam and wanted collateral security for the project in the form of another operational dam, said a Hindustan Times report.Also Read - New Covid Variant Threat: India Extends Travel Restrictions to THESE Countries. Full List Here
India has been raising objections to the construction of the Diamer-Bhasha dam as New Delhi claims that Gilgit-Baltistan region is part of the undivided Jammu and Kashmir state. In November, Pakistan decided not to include the dam in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). A senior Pakistan official then said the conditions for financing the dam by China were unacceptable. However, the Chinese foreign ministry denied any information on the development. Also Read - Delhi CM's Free Pilgrimage Scheme: Kejriwal Govt Includes Kartarpur Sahib in Pakistan. Details Here
NDRC deputy director Wang Xiaotao reportedly told Pakistani counterparts that the question of China demanding ownership of the Diamer-Bhasha dam does not arise. “Currently, the two sides are maintaining contact on the cooperation project of the Diamer-Bhasha Dam. However, the project has not yet been included in the list of energy projects under the Economic Corridor, and the trade authorities of China and Pakistan also didn’t conduct any exchanges on the development plan of the Diamer-Bhasha Dam,” Wang was quoted as saying during the a meeting of the CPEC joint committee last month. Also Read - What Motivated Shreyas Iyer to Get His Maiden Test Ton? Coach Pravin Amre Reveals
“Therefore, there is no ‘Chinese request for full ownership of the Diamer-Bhasha project, its right to operate and make another in Pakistan hydropower station as collateral’ and so on. There are inaccurate aspects in reports of Pakistan media on the project of Diamer-Bhasha, or it just represents the position of individual officials,” Wang had said.
The foundation stone for the construction of Diamer-Bhasha dam was laid in 2011. However, the work on the dam is at a preliminary stage. Pakistan is unable to get the dam financed from international institutions such as the World Bank because of India’s opposition.