Provincial government is keen to expedite the development of Balochistan

Gwadar Development Authority (GDA) Director General Shahzeb Khan Kakar Monday said the government was committed to make Gwadar a Smart Port City and the modern Gwadar master plan and by-laws are ready to take off development activities in the city.

Addressing a meeting with members of Association of Builders and Developers of Pakistan (ABAD) here at ABAD House, he said all hurdles in Gwadar’s development had been removed ABAD Chairman Mohsin Sheikhani, Senior Vice Chairman Sohail Warind, Chairman Southern Region Muhammad Ali Ratadia, Shahid Baloch, Director Town Planning GDA, Assistant Town Planning, former chairman ABAD Junaid Ashraf Taloo, Hassan Bakshi, CEO of Star Marketing Wasiq Naeem and a number of ABAD members were also present on the occasion.

Shahzeb Khan said that he was confident that in the presence of a well organized Association like ABAD Gwadar would become a city like Singapore.

He said the main problem of Gwadar was non-availability of water but this issue has also been resolved as water pipelines were being installed from various dams, which are having capacity of supplying water to the port city for five years while desalination plants were also being installed.

He said the second hurdle of Gawadar’s development was of electricity, which has been overcome as a 300 Megawatt power station was being established with rapid pace. He said the third major hurdle was of law and order which had also been addressed.

The DG said Gwadar would be made a Digitalized city and all land records will be digitalized.

He observed that by 2050 Gwadar’s economic turnover will reach to 30 billion US dollar and per capita income of the country is expected to reach 15000 US dollar which is currently at 1350 US dollar.

He also claimed that Master plan of Gwadar is prepared for 50 years. Shahzeb Khan Kakar said that Karachi is facing problems due to non-availability of proper master plan. He said that private sector will be given priority for the development of Gwadar and One Window facility will be provide to private sector.

Addressing the meeting Chairman ABAD Mohsin Sheikhani pointed out that Gwadar Development Authority was established in 2004 but unfortunately Gwadar could not be developed as per expectations.

He said that all stakeholders should be taken into confidence for making master plan and investors should be promised for not making any change in it. He said that a long term and stable policy and facilities to investors are necessary for development.

Former Chairman ABAD Junaid Ashraf Taloo suggested some changes in by-laws of GDA to provide better investment environment to investors.

Balochistan Minister for Commerce and Industries, Muhammad Khan Utmankhail has said the provincial government had decided to expedite development work on special economic zones to boost significant economic activities in the province. Talking to APP, the minister said the government had initiated the development work on eight special economic zones with the collaboration of the federal government. He urged the federal government to expand its financial support for Balochistan’s special economic zones to create economic activities in the province.

Utmankhail reviewed the plan for setting up 13 border markets at the adjacent border areas of Iran and Afghanistan. The federal government’s assistance was required for developing infrastructure including communication network, water supply and electricity in the market areas, he added. Balochistan was rich in mineral reserves due to which the provincial government had declared three districts as marble cities to facilitate the investors and help empower underprivileged locals economically, the minister mentioned.

Unemployment, he said, being one of the major challenge for the province and believed that the trained and skilled including unskilled workers would soon get jobs. “With the establishment of special economic zones, it would help create employment opportunities for 30,000 locals and entire province would benefit from its associated benefits,” he added. Muhammad Khan said, “The provincial assets and other resources would be utilized for the progress and prosperity of the people under proper planning.”

Seventy industrial units were functional and working at the eastern bypass of industrial zone Quetta, he said, adding, the government was working to ensure provision of more facilities including electricity, water and natural gas.

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