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SEZs, Blue Economy and Gwadar Port Oil City set as targets of CPEC by the government

Setting the ambitious targets for the 12th Five Year Plan (2018-23), the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government plans to rejuvenate industrial development of Pakistan through Special Economic Zones (SEZs), invigorate blue economy and develop Gwadar port oil city under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

According to documents available with Business Recorder, the actions envisaged for improving and develop industries include; (i) setting up at least four SEZs with Chinese relocation, (ii) import substitution with China in light engineering sector through relocation of Chinese industries in SECs, (iii) relocation of Chinese export focused light manufacturing and consumer products labor intensive industry to add exports, (iv) expansion of IT Sector through joint ventures and (v) transfer of technology and capacity enhancement to increase productivity.

For development of Gwadar port including oil city, the government plans to take the following actions in five years: (i) initiate development of Gwadar as per Gwadar city Master plan, (ii) set regulatory framework for Gwadar city, (iii) establish Oil City Gwadar to substitute refined oil imports with crude oil, (iv) develop aquaculture for fisheries and sea food along the coastal area to increase exports by 30 percent, (v) establish marine science-policy interface platform in Gwadar to enhance knowledge, and (vi) kick start development of Coastal Tourism.

The government has also planned a ‘Gateway of Prosperity’ deliverables under CEPC during the next five years by taking actions that include: (i) completion of early harvest projects, (ii) optimum benefits from the CPEC projects through third-country participation, (ii) connect Gwadar Port of Pakistan to China’s northwestern region of Xinjiang via Eastern and Western corridor, (iii) socio economic uplift in areas around CPEC Corridors by interventions through Joint Working Group (JWG) on Socio Economic Development, and (iv) jump start Agriculture cooperation and add 11,000 MW of energy in national grid with Matiari-Lahore line completed.

Both the countries have established Joint Working Group (JWG) on Agriculture sector and Socio-economic Development for cooperation for exploring avenues of pilot project and capacity enhancement. About development of agriculture sector and its marketing, the government wants to take the following actions: (i) develop improved and efficient connectivity to help farmers to access the markets, (ii) value addition & Co-branding of dairy, livestock and poultry sectors to uplift these up to 30%, (iii) Productivity enhancement of fruits and high value crops through transfer of technology in precision agriculture (Drip Irrigation, Sprinklers etc.) by 30%, and (iv) application of modified & high yield variety seeds for crop diversification to substitute edible oil/pulses imports during next five years (2018-23).

The government plans to uplift in areas around CPEC Corridors and less developed areas by interventions through JWG on Socio Economic Development.

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