Beijing: Prime Minister Imran Khan, who arrived in China on Tuesday morning, while addressing an event in Beijing said that he wished he could follow the example of Chinese President Xi Jinping and send 500 corrupt individuals in Pakistan to jail.
Speaking at the China Council for Promotion of International Trade, the premier said that one thing he had learned from China was how the country’s leadership tackled corruption.
“One of President Xi Jinping’s biggest crusade has been against corruption,” he said, adding that he had heard that some 400 “ministerial-level people” had been convicted on charges of corruption and put behind jail in the last five years in China.
Imran was referring to Xi’s ferocious anti-corruption drive launched in 2012 that reportedly netted more than 1.3 million officials at various levels, from the elite to the ordinary.
“I wish I could follow President Xi’s example and put 500 corrupt people in Pakistan in jail,” remarked the premier, saying unfortunately processing [cases] in Pakistan was “very cumbersome”.
He counted corruption as one of the biggest impediments to investment in a country.
Prime Minister Imran said that the most important thing that Pakistan could learn from China was the way it lifted people out of poverty.
“What inspires me most about China is the way they have lifted 700 million people out of poverty in 30 years,” he said. “This has never happened in human history.”
The premier said that since his government had come to power, it had taken a conscious decision to make it easier for investors to come to Pakistan.
“We will want them to make profits in Pakistan.
“The Prime Minister’s Office is driving opportunities for people to invest in our country. The ease of doing business is driven from the Prime Minister’s Office. We have just formed a CPEC Authority because we were having problems in CPEC projects because they were under a lot of different ministries.
“We have now decided that there will be one authority which will resolve all the problems of CPEC, and that authority will be the Prime Minister’s Office, so that my office can make it easier for people investing in Pakistan.”
The premier recounted various steps that Pakistan had taken including the completion of phase one of the Gwadar Free Zone.