Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain said on Thursday the petroleum products prices in Pakistan were still the lowest as compared to the region. In a tweet, the minister said oil reserves were not discovered in past three years ultimately prices went up as the country had to buy the oil from international market. He said the same rule applied to the other products that the country imports. The minister said that the real achievement was that the income of 75% of the population that also increased significantly. Fawad said that Pakistanis purchasing power was better than the Indians. Despite problems of the salaried class, he said, 60% of the population in Pakistan is associated with the agriculture sector who had an additional income of Rs 1100 billion. The minister said the income of millions of people associated with construction and industry has also increased. Fawad said that Pakistan in line with the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan wanted to expand China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) to Central Asian states. Talking to media in Dushanbe, he expressed the hope that the situation in Afghanistan would improve. Pakistan was offering access to Gwadar port, a strategic component in China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), to landlocked Central Asian countries in the hope of stimulating activity, he said. Under the Trans-Mazar-e-Sharif Train and Road Network project with Uzbekistan, he said, Pakistan wanted to connect Gwadar and Karachi via Mazar-e-Sharif, first with Tashkent and then with Dushanbe and Kazakhstan. He said after completion of the project all the Central Asian States would be connected by train and road changing the entire regional scenario. Prime Minister Imran Khan, he said, discussed Afghan situation in his meeting with President of Kazakhstan. The prime minister was of the opinion that Afghanistan would either move towards stability or complete chaos. “If the world inks an agreement with the Taliban authorities in Afghanistan, it will not only benefit Afghanistan but the entire world,” he said, adding that leaving Afghanistan in the lurch right now would create problems. Fawad said that the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) has provided Pakistan a fresh opportunity to promote regional cooperation. He said Pakistan has pinned high hopes to the SCO as country’s main economic focus was to establish close ties with the Central Asian states. He said Pakistan also wanted to seize this opportunity and talk about the Afghan issue. Pakistan is hopeful that the day would come soon when Afghanistan would also participate in SCO summit as a member state, he added.