ISLAMABAD, SEPT 22 – (DNA): People associated with the hotel industry believe that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) significantly created huge opportunities benefitting the commercial entities on both sides of the border.
With the launching of CPEC in 2013, the visibility of the Chinese in public spaces has increased in the main cities of Pakistan.
” I have been running Kim Mun restaurant for over 20 years, back then we only had 8 tables but due to support from the local people and love for Chinese food, now we were able to expand it. said Zhang Guo Gen, the restaurant’s owner while talking to China Economic Net (CEN).
The restaurant in downtown of the federal capital is reopened and backed to business since the COVID-19 lockdown was eased by the government.
When asked about the response from local people being a Chinese in Pakistan, Zhang replied cheerfully “We have been living here as Pakistani for the past 30 years. Pakistani people are really friendly and welcoming, they never make you feel like an outsider.
When inquired from Zhang about the business in Pakistan during Covid-19 period he told the CEN that We take public health and safety very seriously, this pandemic is a serious problem and unfortunately we do not know when it’s going to end.
According to Zhang, business is not as good as It used to be during the pre-COVID period but now slowly people are becoming more confident at coming to the restaurant.
We take utmost importance in terms of hygiene and cleanliness to ensure customers satisfaction of coming to our restaurant for food.
On Pakistan’s handling of COVID-19 pandemic Zhang replied “I feel like the Pakistani government are doing a great job, I mean on a data perspective Pakistan is handling the pandemic really well.”
Pakistan as a country is very supportive in terms of new business but you have to understand who your target market is and just focus on it”. The Kim Mun owner advised his countrymen who are interested to run a food business in Pakistan.
The inflow of Chinese nationals has greatly helped hotels and the restaurant industry to grow. According to the data from The Capital Development Authority (CDA) there are around 15 Chinese restaurants in total in the city while 12 among them were opened after 2013.
In addition, many Pakistani restaurants located in the cities included in CPEC projects have incorporated famous Chinese dishes in their traditional Pakistani menus following the presence of Chinese citizens there. The introduction of Chinese food has given a fresh look to Pakistani dining tables.