KARACHI: Multi-billion dollar projects of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) in Gwadar are moving towards completion at a rapid pace, Minister of State for Ports and Shipping Chaudhry Iqbal Jafri said on Thursday.
The road from Gwadar port to Coastal Highway will be completed within one year while master plan of the zone is to be completed in December, he said while talking to the media.
“Gwadar airport’s runway, the largest in Pakistan, will also be completed within a year while Gwadar Port is expected to receive its first major cargo ship on October 18,” the minister claimed.
He said that a planned business centre to facilitate foreign investors in Gwadar Free Economic Zone will also be completed by December this year. “Work on a six-track road and a railway track from Gwadar Port to Gwadar Free Economic Zone will soon start to speed up shipment of cargo.
“Pakistan will get 9% share in revenue of Gwadar Free Economic Zone or 30% to 32% of the total profit from the zone.”
Answering a question, the official said that the government has given the Gwadar Free Economic Zone’s land to Chinese developers for 40 years while it has issued a lease of 99 years to Chinese companies planning to set up manufacturing units. “CPEC projects are aimed at creating jobs for Pakistani people and building foreign exchange reserves for the country,” he said.
“The government has devised an effective strategy to provide water and electricity in Gwadar,” he claimed, adding that provision of basic utilities will be ensured before plants become operational.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 29th, 2017.