CPEC has or has not brought economic growth & development in Pakistan, is a different debate. In this article, we will share how through CPEC, the number of Chinese have increased in Islamabad causing an increase in the number of Chinese restaurants in the Capital.
As per Capital Development Authority (CDA), there are 15 Chinese restaurants in Islamabad, 12 of which opened after 2013.
Mei Kong was the first Chinese Restaurant to open in Rawalpindi in the 1970s. After 10 years, China Town Restaurant opened in Islamabad as per a Chinese restaurant’s manager.
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He said that the growth in Chinese restaurants in Islamabad is not just due to China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) but due to the fact that the number Chinese traders & tourists have increased in Islamabad. They do not have any link to CPEC but they have become regular customers at Chinese Restaurants. CPEC is indirectly related to the growth of Chinese customers at restaurants because due to the project more & more Chinese are visiting the Capital and want to dine in at Chinese restaurants.
Kim Mun’s Manager Andrew said that in his restaurant locals & foreigners both dine in. Thus Chinese food is not just loved by Chinese, it is appreciated and enjoyed by all.
A Chinese national running his own small restaurants in an apartment said, “Pakistan’s spicy food for a long time does not suit us we have to get back to our traditional food to which we are more accustomed”. The major clients at his restaurant are Chinese workers working in big businesses including ZTE and Huawei.
Jade’s Operational Manager said, “Chinese eateries, due to being hygienic and abdominal friendly are now popular across the globe.”
Adding, “We are no longer restricted to our traditional dishes and besides oriental cuisines, fast foods like pizzas and burgers are also being offered here in Chinese eating houses, which was not expected in the past.”