Chinese President Xi Jinping unveiled his country's biggest overseas investment – the ambitious 3,000 km-long China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) - during his historic state visit to Islamabad.

A total of 51 agreements were signed in different fields, including infrastructure projects, energy generation, agriculture, education, telecommunications and research.

Of the 51, 30 agreements were linked to the strategic corridor, regarded as the biggest connectivity project between the two countries after Karakoram highway built in 1979.

It will shorten the route for China's energy imports from the Middle East by about 12,000 kms.

The CPEC will link China's underdeveloped far-western region to Pakistan's Gwadar deep-sea port on the Arabian Sea via PoK through a massive and complex network of roads, railways, business zones, energy schemes and pipelines.

The corridor - expected to be ready in three years and provide about 10,400 MWs of electricity - gives China direct access to the Indian Ocean and beyond.

Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who along with Xi witnessed the agreements signing ceremony after holding talks with him earlier, said the two countries decided to increase
regional and economic cooperation and that it considers China's security as important.

"I have assured Xi, China's security is as important to us as Pakistan's security," Sharif said, adding: "Friendship with China is the cornerstone of Pakistan's foreign policy.".

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