PM chairs meetings on Pak-China Economic Corridor, law and order situation in Balochistan

GAWADAR: Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif chaired high-level meetings regarding Pak-China Economic Corridor and the law and order situation in Balochistan here on Thursday.

The Prime Minister was also briefed about the ongoing development projects in Balochistan, especially in Gawadar.

The meeting was also attended by Minister for Finance, Senator Ishaq Dar, Minister for Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage, Senator Pervaiz Rashid, Minister for Planning and Development, Ahsan Iqbal, Chief of the Army Staff General Raheel Sharif and the Prime Minister’s Advisor Sardar Sanaullah Zehri.

The Prime Minister appreciated the efforts and steps of the provincial government, civil administration, law enforcement agencies and Armed Forces in bringing back the normalcy, a press release issued by the PM Office said.

The Prime Minister recalled his vision of 90s, when he envisaged Gawadar like Singapore and Hong Kong adding that Gawadar has not been given proper attention in the past.

“Gawadar has all the features a free port should have and it should be developed as a free port on the lines with Dubai, Singapore and Hong Kong Ports,” he added.

He also announced the construction of a 300-bed hospital, school, college and a technical training centre at Gawadar.

The Prime Minister directed the Finance Division to release Rs. 1.6 billion for Gawadar port dredging (making it deeper).

Gawadar Development will prove a game changer not only for Balochistan but for the region too, the Prime Minister said. He directed that the interest of the local people should be protected while developing Gawadar.

Earlier, Chief Minister Balochistan, Dr. Abdul Malik Baloch welcomed the Prime Minister on his visit to Gawadar.

The Chief Minister said that it was first time in the history of Balochistan that 78 per cent of allocated amount has been released to the provincial government.

Moreover, Rs. 110 billion allocated in the NFC Award for this year have been released, he added.

Dr. Abdul Malik thanked the Prime Minister for taking special interest in alleviating the deprivation of the people of strategically most important province of the country.

Director General Frontier Works Organization (FWO) also briefed the Prime Minister on the on-going road projects in Balochistan, with special reference to Gawadar.

The Prime Minister and the Chief Minister appreciated DG FWO Major General M Afzal for ensuring transparency in development process and completion of construction work through fast track.

Later talking to the media, the Prime Minister said that Pakistan Army and its allied institutions like FWO, are playing positive role in development of the country. The political and military leadership are on the same page on the progress and prosperity of Pakistan, he added.

The Prime Minister also appreciated the commitment of the Chief Minister Balochistan towards development of the province.

He said that Gawadar was being developed on modern lines and its airport and seaport are being extended to cater for the future economic activities.

The Prime Minister said that Rs. 162 billion have been allocated for Balochistan under the Pak-China Economic Corridor project.