Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Women University (SBBWU), Peshawar, invites submission of research papers for International Conference on "The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC)" to be held with the cooperation of Centre of Excellence for CPEC, PIDE, University of Peshawar and Higher Education Commission, Islamabad, from 6th to 8th February 2018 at SBBWU, Peshawar Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. The theme of the conference will be CPEC: Opportunities and Challenges.


China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is proclaimed as a ‘game changer’ for regional cooperation and Pakistan’s economy. Being a crucial part of a major development initiative led by China, known as ‘One Belt, One Road’ (OBOR), to connect Asia with Europe and Africa, through Middle East, the CPEC is much linked to expectations, interests, mutual benefits as well as regional and global geopolitics. The initiative has been well-received in Pakistan and China and both countries regard the CPEC as a basis of potential interaction between their respective national development strategies. Both the countries share the belief that economic development can help stabilize and improve security situation and wellbeing and quality of life within restive regions of Pakistan and stabilize China’s western periphery regions, particularly the Xinjiang.

CPEC includes a series of infrastructure projects including transportation networks, such as, highways, air ports, Gwadar Deep Sea Port; energy projects, Special Economic Zones (SEZs) and agriculture. It is expected that infrastructure projects of CPEC will create enormous jobs, help bridge Pakistan’s power shortfall, create market niche, enhance trade, boost agro-economy and tourism. The projects, if implemented in an efficient and timely manner, will boost Pakistan’s role in global trading networks and augment Pakistan’s GDP growth rate. It is estimated that CPEC project will create some 700,000 direct jobs during the period 2015–2030 and add up to 2.5 % to the country's growth rate. It is high time to understand labour market needs and skills matching and discover employment opportunities for the people and youth of Pakistan.

Moreover, the CPEC projects will alter the urban dynamics and the spatial pattern of our cities impacting the socio-cultural aspects, entrepreneurship, environment and governance. Above all, CPEC can help realize Pakistan-Vision 2025 and the role of governance structure for achieving the goals and objectives stated in Vision 2025. A nuanced understanding of these dynamics will seek to address a range of issues such as strategic thinking, urban design, public consultation, environmental issues, policy recommendations, implementation and management to create sustainable urbanization by building smart new towns along the CPEC western, central and eastern roads or near the newly established SEZs.

For the CPEC to reach its full potential, there are security and political challenges in Pakistan created by hidden hand which may cause delays must be addressed through joint action by the both nations. At regional level, CPEC projects uniquely intersect numerous regional situations, including Kashmir dispute, the Afghanistan-Pakistan-China tripartite cooperation, Pakistan-India economic cooperation, Iran's inclusion in the deal, access to Markets of Central Asia, Russia’s interests in the Corridor, and Chinese foreign policy ambitions. At global level, CPEC, will open up different trade and connectivity channels between Pakistan and Europe and Africa through Middle East, thereby propelling the country’s significance to the global heights. An analysis of these geopolitical considerations with multiple competing political interests relating to CPEC will be relevant and useful as these considerations can influence future global policy adjustments particularly in South and South East Asia.


The main objectives of the conference is to deliberate upon the socio-economic development, cultural, environmental, political and security impact of CPEC on Pakistan and the region to help in formulating rational policy decisions based on evidence. The conference provides an opportunity for participants including academia, media and civil society to share knowledge through novel approaches in policy decision making, development planning and implementation of CPEC projects. Also to document its socio-economic, geopolitical, regional security and connectivity, trade and industries, socio-cultural dimensions of CPEC. The conference welcomes papers on the following themes.

International Conference sub-themes

  1. Socio-Economic Impact
    Sub Themes
    • People and History of the region
    • Human capital development
    • Equitable inclusive and balanced development growth
    • Socio-economic, cultural and ethnic issues and regional integration
    • Institutional development and reforms
    • Extremism and security situation
    • Addressing eradication of poverty and inequalities
    • Sustainable development and environmental implication
    • Awareness on CPEC; Media Perspectives
    • Political parties and public opinion
  2. Urban Development in Pakistan
    • SEZs and Urban development
    • Mass Transit urban transport
    • Ambient environmental and health challenges
    • Building of new towns
  3. Trade and industrial cooperation
    • People to people contact for joint venture, entrepreneurs and business
    • Export promotion and Import substitution
    • Designing of Special Economic Zones (SEZs) under New Economic Geography (NEG)
    • Energy
  4. Natural resources and climate change
    • Agriculture development
    • Eco-tourism development
    • Natural resources and biological diversity
    • Urban renewal and building of new towns
    • Water resource development
    • Climate change and land use planning
    • Education and health development
  5. Job Growth and Human Resource Development
    • Prospects for employment
    • Skill development
    • Gender perspective
  6. Financing and financial sector integration>
    • Financial development strategy for equitable and inclusive growth
    • Fiscal and monetary policies and framework
    • Currency swap
    • Laws, rules and procedural development for financial integration
    • Financial inclusion
  7. Geo-Political Environment and regional integration
    • Improvement in border security-related concerns and issues
    • CPEC, connectivity and regional integration
    • CPEC and Neighbouring countries Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, India, Russia and CARs

Specifications of Abstracts and Research Papers:

Abstracts of 150-300 words clearly indicating research topic, objectives, methodology, results, and conclusions along with a brief CV should be sent to via e-mail:

  • Researcher adheres to conditions of scientific research; originality, methodology, documentation, quality of language and style.
  • The paper should not previously published or submitted for publication.
  • Papers will be subject to scientific arbitration.
  • Content of the paper should have a minimum of 3000 words and a maximum of 6000 words.
  • The paper should be in APA reference style.


Important Dates

  • Deadline for the submission of abstracts: 6th November 2017
  • Intimation of acceptance of abstracts: 21st November 2017
  • Deadline for the submission of final papers: 8th January 2018

Boarding, lodging will be provided by the organizers. Limited number of Travel Grants subject to the availability of the fund will be provided if application are sent early particularly for young and elderly scholars.

For further communication and inquiry please contact:

Ms. Sana Jamil
Manager Research Operations & Development
Office of Research, Innovation and Commercialization (ORIC)
Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Women University
Peshawar, Pakistan
Contact No: +92-091-9211197 and +92-091-9224709