ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will kick off the shipment of trade goods from Gwadar Port to international markets today (Sunday), marking the historic launch of trade activity through the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).
During his day-long visit to Gwadar, the prime minister will also address a ceremony of launching the first mega pilot trade cargo.
“This is the onset of the progress that has been awaited for years. But now this journey will continue till the times to come,” the Prime Minister House said in a statement on Saturday. It said Gwadar is nature’s gift to Pakistan and China’s friendship and cooperation had made it more valuable. “We are crossing a new milestone into a new era of international relations,” it added.
First Chinese trade convoy arrives in Gwadar through CPEC
Starting its journey from Kashghar, the Chinese trade cargo reached Gwadar safely from Gilgit-Baltistan after travelling throughout the country. The trade caravan, which reached Gwadar from China under the strict security provided by the Pakistan Army and other security agencies, will now be shipped to its next export destination.
The government has already allocated land for Gwadar Free Trade Zone and the government has also announced concessions for Gwadar Port and Free Trade Zone in Balochistan. Moreover, the projects of Exclusive Industrial Park Processing Zone and Mineral Economic Zone are also being executed on priority basis.
A project worth Rs 25 billion is being executed for the development of Gwadar city keeping in view its importance. The federal government gave a free hand to the provincial government in that regard that designed the project considering Gwadar’s basic needs.
The federal government provided all resources for the installation of a plant to make the sea water drinkable, besides launching an additional Rs11.5 billion project for clean drinking water to Gwadar during 2015-16. The quality of underground water is also being improved and the existing 50-bed hospital is being upgraded to 300-bed facility.
A university and a technical and vocational training institute are also being set up in Gwadar to produce required manpower. The locals will be preferred for enrollment in these institutes.
Under CPEC, the government has prioritized energy and road infrastructure. To meet the electricity needs, a 300-megawatt power plant is being installed in Gwadar that will also be linked to national grid.
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A Special Security Force has been raised to provide a security cover to the Chinese investors. Gwadar is also being made a safe city too boost investors’ confidence.
The construction of a new international airport is also under way in Gwadar to facilitate the movement of investors. Moreover, Gwadar city is also being connected with rest of the country through road and rail networks.
Courtesy : Express Tribune