Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal instructed all concerned departments on Tuesday to resolve Gwadar’s war and power supply issues.
He stated that people of Gwadar are priority in the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Currently, CPEC projects of Necessary Facilities of Fresh Water Treatment, Water Supply and Distribution cost US $130, and 300 MW Coal based Power Project cost US $600 are being implemented in Gwadar.
These projects are being formulated to meet demands of power and water of the local community and the modern expanding port city of Gwadar. While presiding a high-level meeting on Gwadar projects, Iqbal directed that the plan for Gwadar city should ensure provision of an integrated railroad and transport system. The Gwadar Master City Plan must cover present and future maritime trends and assessment of other regional ports.
“They must compile it all in a comprehensive document which includes all aspects of a modern port city, and in line with the requirements of CPEC,” Iqbal said. Security Planning Shoaib Ahmad Siddiqui, Chief Secretary Balochistan Aurangzeb Haque, senior officials from line ministers and government of Balochistan, and from Chinese Embassy were all present during the meeting.
Officials from Gwadar Development Authority and Ministry of Energy briefed the participants on Gwadar Master City Plan, and power projects and water supply issues of Gwadar. “To make Gwadar, a competitive port, the plan should come up with solutions,” Iqbal remarked while commenting on the briefing by GDA.
He further instructed the induction of a senior and qualified expert on regional and urban planning in the review committee made for this project. The cost of the Gwadar Smart port city Master Plan is $4 million which has been obtained through a grant from China was launched in August 2017. It envisages preparation of a detailed master plan including city planning, urban design, city transport planning and design, energy, technology and connectivity of infrastructure and policies among other things.
Iqbal maintained that people of Gwadar are top priority, and instructed that maximum benefits be offered to local community under CPEC. He further directed that besides expediting CPEC projects of Water and Power Plant, alternate arrangements should be made to address the problem on war footing. Officials of GDA and Ministry of Energy have presented a number of solutions to resolve the water supply and power issues.
This article originally appeared in PakObserver.