(March 29, 2019)
President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum (PBIF), President All Karachi Industrial Alliance (AKIA), Senior Vice Chairman of the Businessmen Panel of FPCCI and former provincial minister, Mian Zahid Hussain on Friday said that first phase of Gwader Free Zone completed and inaugurated in January 2018 and to promote enormous investment and trade opportunities internationally, first international expo has been organized in 2018. Balochistan has huge potential in mines and mineral sector; to promote this, Gwadar Port Authority and China overseas port holding company jointly organized international mines and mineral expo in September 2018 and now second international expo is being organized on 28 – 29 March, 2019 in which several delegations and exhibitors from various countries and sectors including construction, shipping lines, logistics and value added industries are participating. The expo has been inaugurated by Federal Minister for Maritime Affairs Ali Zaidi, MNA Aslam Bhotani and Chinese ambassador Yao Jing.
The Veteran Business Leader told the business community that Gwader possesses all characteristics of being an international hub of trade, industry and investment given to its strategic location and deep sea port. It has vital role in one road one belt initiative which reduces China’s distance from Persian Gulf to mere 5 thousand KMs from 16 thousand KMs. The GFZ will be an international hub for trade activities which will benefit all countries in the region in addition to China and Pakistan. There is huge potential and opportunities in Gwader for various sectors including shipping lines, logistics, mines & minerals, oil & gas, livestock, sea food and value added industries, which can benefit local and foreign investors.
The Former Minister said that 12 major projects are in process in Gwadar under CPEC which will promote trade, industry and economy of the locality and will practically improve trade ties will surrounding countries including Central Asia and Gulf countries. Government should consider the recommendations of Gwadar chamber of commerce in order to attract investors in more than one lac investment opportunities in the area, so that the dream for Gwadar to be international economic hub comes true.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that peaceful and stable Gwadar is vital for CPEC success and investment growth in Pakistan. On Friday March 29, the Prime Minister Imran Khan will attend ground breaking ceremony of Gwadar international airport which will be the second largest in Pakistan after completion and will facilitate domestic and international flights. The Prime Minister has also laid the foundation stone of Balochistan Medical complex and Quetta – Zhob N-50 highway as a part of western corridor of CPEC.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that Government is providing Balochistan the opportunity to play its part in the economic development, which is appreciative. Local investors are being encouraged and international community is being attracted for investing in Balochistan. However, Gwadar chamber should be given due representation in the growth process of the region to draw long lasting and fruitful results.