KARACHI: Master Plan 2020: can it deliver?

Discussion in 'Economy & Development' started by Neo, Jan 1, 2007.

  1. Neo

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    December 31, 2006 Sunday Zilhaj 09, 1427

    KARACHI: Master Plan 2020: can it deliver?

    KARACHI, Dec 30: The consultants and the city government officials giving a presentation on the proposed Master Plan 2020 had a difficult time satisfying an audience that was technically sound and raised specific questions regarding different subjects and the areas that have been left out of the planning process or purposely neglected as some social activists alleged.

    Very little time was allotted to some panelists to give their views on the Master Plan 2020 presentation given by Naveed Zaheer, a consultant and city government official Iftikhar Kaimkhani at the consultation organized by the Institute of Architects Pakistan on Saturday.

    Giving details, they said a single set of regulations and rules were proposed for land use in the entire city regardless of who owned the land. This would ensure uniform laws, built environment etc in all parts of the city.

    They said further consultations with other stakeholders will be held before the plan is finalised, to obtain their input. It will be evaluated annually to check whether issues were being resolved and problems facing the masses removed.

    Mr Zaheer said the plan entails framework and policy guidelines based on socio-economic structure, existing land use and future population projections. Various studies will be undertaken to analyse and propose projections in the road transportation sector, water supply, sewerage and other utilities and given a legal cover by the city government to make it an enforceable document managing the city’s growth in future years.

    He said plans had also been drawn to improve living conditions in the katchi abadis by asking builders and developers to construct high rises of four to six floors. The land thus vacated could be used as open spaces or for commercial purposes.

    There were suggestions for allotment of plots under a new scheme as presently, speculators purchased the plots and prices were driven beyond deserving people’s reach. They said over 150,000 acres were required in the future.

    They said four ring roads were being planned to provide signal free access to commuters to move quickly around the city. New water supply sources were being identified to meet the water scarcity. Pre-treated deep-sea disposal of industrial waste was being recommended. A landfill site in Thatta had been identified. Development and conservation of water front, mangroves and heritage of the city were proposed and ecotourism prescribed to provide relief to entertainment starved Karachiites. The conditions of existing schools and hospitals would also be improved, the consultant said.

    Noman Ahmad of NED University said governance was a major problem of the city. Over 70 per cent of the solid waste was not being collected, water was brought in from far off sources and a lot of it was wasted due to leakages. The sewerage system was not working efficiently, the bulk of sewerage went untreated to the sea polluting the marine environment, land use change was rampant. Infrastructure was not updated even in Lyari – one of the oldest areas of the city, illegally constructed buildings were being regularised. To improve the situation, good governance is needed, he added. Arif Hassan of Urban Resource Centre said a plan was as good as the institution that would implement it. He said this plan had many factual errors and various studies done on inner city areas, the kutchi abadis etc had probably not even been referred to. The economic survey for the plan had also been conducted on only 5,000 families, which was a very small sample size.

    He said over 50 per cent of the city’s population lived in kutchi abadis and the plan did not deal with their problems. The transport problem of the poor was that there was no mass transit system, the coastal belt was being devastated and stripped off its natural beauty, he added.

    Roland D'Souza of Shehri said while it was globally accepted that development must not damage the environment, here development was being carried out at the cost of environmental degradation and business interests were given priority over the society. He said that a majority of Karachiites were poor, lived in slums and did not own a vehicle there were hardly any pedestrian streets, and signal free thoroughfares were being given priority. He said planning in this city was being done for the rich, while the poor continued to suffer.

    Other speakers said Karachi was the only mega city where public transport system was controlled by private transporters. They said loans equivalent to a little over $1.6 billion had been taken by Karachiites to purchase vehicles, causing congestion on roads, while loans for housing were given less priority. Illegally constructed buildings were regularized crippling the fragile infrastructure on one hand and encourage the builders mafia to further destroy what was left of the city.

    Masood-ul-Hassan Jafri, Arif Bilgaumi, Habib Fidaali, Akber Baloch, Hasnain Lotia, Ejaz Ahad and others spoke at the meeting conducted by Ayesha T. Haq.

    http://www.dawn.com/2006/12/31/local7.htm
     
  2. Neo

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    Satellite towns suggested in suburb of Karachi

    KARACHI (January 04 2007): Federal Minister for Housing, Syed Safwan Ullah has suggested the establishment of satellite towns in suburbs of Karachi. Speaking at a dinner meeting hosted by former chairman, Karachi Association of Trade and Industry (KATI), Shaikh Manzar Alam, the minister said.

    The city population was growing at alarming rate and this situation might further aggravate the availability of housing units and transport facility in the city. He said that there was no spare for implementation of new housing scheme and suggested the establishment of satellite towns in Karachi suburbs so that the coming generations could benefit from it.

    He advised business community to invest in housing and transport sector to overcome persisting shortage of housing units and transport in the city. Speaking on the occasion, FPCCI former president, SM Munir urged the government to reduce markup rate for textile sector from 14 percent to 7 percent whereas refinance rates should be 4 percent to give these sectors a berating space.

    He said that textile sector was facing sever challenges from its competitors in international market and added this sector needed more incentives to provide commutative edge to Pakistan products.

    Welcoming the guests, Manzar Alam said that the office-bearers elected in the Pakistan Arts Council Karachi elections had the capacity to solve problems facing its members.

    http://www.brecorder.com/index.php?id=513631&currPageNo=1&query=&search=&term=&supDate=
     
  3. Neo

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    KARACHI: Korangi effluent plant opens next month

    KARACHI, Jan 6: The first effluent treatment plant of the country in the Korangi industrial area has been completed at a cost of Rs492 million.

    This was stated by the chief executive, Trade Development Authority Pakistan, Tariq Ikram, while talking to newsmen during his visit to the Korangi Effluent Treatment Plant on Friday.

    He said the plant had been completed in six years through the collaboration of the TDAP, the Pakistan Tanneries Association, the Dutch government and the city government. The TDAP has contributed 68 per cent, the PTA 20 per cent, the Dutch government eight per cent and the CDGK four per cent of the cost.

    Mr Ikram pointed out that President Pervez Musharraf would perform the inauguration of the plant in the second week of February.

    The plant is able to treat the effluent sludge and solid waste of tanneries of the Korangi industrial area through converting 10,000 million gallons or 42,000 cubic meter hazardous water into harmless water per day. About 26,000 cubic meter water of the city would also be treated in the plant at no cost.

    Ikram said that environmental compliance was as critical for Pakistan's image as the quality of export goods. The plant is working through UASB technology that is imported from Dutch organisation, operating in India.

    A TDAP official said that around 400 such plants were in operation in India. In Pakistan, 11 more such treatment plants are required to treat effluent.

    Speaking about the efficacy of the plant, PTA President Gulzar Firoz said UASB process had been chosen after studying four technologies. “UASB is the cheapest and best technology,” he added.

    About 70 per cent of the power requirement of the plant is to be met by the plant itself which is powered by a gas generator for which biogas is accumulated by the treatment of waste.

    The gas generators would start production of electricity to fulfil the required amount within six months.

    The running cost of the plant is Rs50 million per annum and would be met by the tanners.

    The plant is located at a distance of five kilometres from the sea where the treated water is to be discharged. The sludge and solid waste from the effluent are disposed of at the cites designated by the CDGK

    http://www.dawn.com/2007/01/07/local12.htm
     
  4. Neo

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    Karachi incorporated in world's 12 mega cities: Mustafa :)

    KARACHI (January 10 2007): The City Nazim, City District Government Karachi (CDGK), Syed Mustafa Kamal has said due to the extraordinary infrastructure development work in city during the last one year and marketing it into the world, the city of Karachi has incorporated in the world's 12 mega cities.

    This he stated as a chief guest in the launching ceremony of Siemens' 2007 calendar at a local hotel on Tuesday. "It is an honour for us to incorporate Karachi into world's 12 mega cities as we have launched an extensive campaign in the world during the last one year to create a positive image to change the world's concept regarding Karachi," he said.

    Mustafa Kamal the impartial experts has accepted Karachi to have extraordinary potential and opportunities of trade and commerce. This would also benefit the overall country's economics and create a good image.

    It is also an honour that the World Economic Forum selected Karachi's City Nazim and invited him to attend the upcoming session as no any other mayor or city nazim from Pakistan received such invitation. Participation in the World Economic Forum will help boost the marketing of Karachi into the world and will deliver presentation regarding different sectors to the world.

    He pointed out that due to positive initiatives taken by present City District Government Karachi during the last one year, the city has received 900 million dollar direct foreign investment into the metropolis as provincial and federal governments had role in this. The foreign investment have been increasing in the city as investors from different parts of the world busying to survey Karachi's markets to put their investment in the city. In the present era, the atmosphere of competition has proved that Karachi is one of the best places in the world where the opportunities of investment are vast.

    He said the work on Elevated Expressway worth 400 million dollar, IT Tower with the estimated cost of 250 million dollar and Mass Transit Corridor worth 300 million dollar would be kick off this year.

    The City District Government Karachi (CDGK) is paying utter attention to develop the city's infrastructure and constructing bridges, fly-overs and standard roads within record time frame while the problems of water, sewerage and others are also being resolved. This showing the bright picture of developed Karachi in the future where all the civic facilities for the citizens would be available, he added.

    The government striving hard to provide maximum facilities to the local and foreign investors as well as creating a good atmosphere for them. "I am hopeful about the future of Karachi which will benefit the nation as well as country to see major positive changes," he added.

    Managing Director Siemens Sohail Wajahat Siddiqui in his speech said Siemens Calendar "Megaviews 2007" is not just a calendar but a statement on the current mega trends in the world.

    The fundamental thing you need in the growing economies is energy and for aging societies you need better health care, large and strong infrastructure. This basic problem that needed to be addressed and Siemens is doing that in all the mega-cities of the world.

    "We got Karachi included in this calendar and thus established it as one of the 12 most important mega-cities of the world," he said. This calendar whose copies we have produced locally is an international calendar of Siemens A.G. that will be distributed in 190 countries of the world and draw attention to Karachi in all those countries making it possible to attract investment and enhance the image of our beloved city. In a year declared as 'visit Pakistan year' this is a great contribution to the national effort to project a soft image of Pakistan.

    http://www.brecorder.com/index.php?id=515771&currPageNo=1&query=&search=&term=&supDate=
     
  5. Neo

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    Karachi has attracted $1 billion FDI: Mustafa

    KARACHI (January 13 2007): Karachi has attracted $1 billion out of $3.8 billion foreign direct investment in the country, which shows the confidence of investors on the city. Syed Kamal Mustafa, Nazim, Karachi City District Government (CDGK) said this at the inaugural ceremony of the IAPEX-2007, organised by Institute of Architects, Pakistan (IAP), here on Friday.

    The Nazim said that the city had attracted $one billion FDI, which was 26 percent of total investment, so its our duty to make the city more attractive for further economic activities. He said that the city government had materialised the fourth master plan.

    In the past three plans were made but none of them could be started, he added. Karachi has 180 million population and is the biggest city of the country. The city generates about 68 percent revenue and having two ports. It is the hub of all financial activities.

    The city also links the country with other countries of the world. The nazim invited people from local and abroad to come forward and participate in development works. He said a huge infrastructure was required for the big population.

    People engaged in the construction industry had opportunities to take part in the speedy uplift projects in the city. On the occasion Ejaz Ahmed, President IAP said that the IAPEX-2007 was organised to bring professional architects, engineers and builders in direct contact with manufacturers and dealers of building products. The exhibition was an ideal forum to introduce new materials.

    He said concurrent with the exhibition was the three-day international Architectural Forum with the theme of 'Emerging Architecture'. Renowned architects from over 10 countries would present papers, he added. This was an excellent opportunity for our architects and architecture students to listen and interact with the luminaries of the profession, he added.

    http://www.brecorder.com/index.php?i... rm=&supDate=
     
  6. Neo

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    Karachi expands its boundaries

    KARACHI: The developing economic heartland of the country, Karachi is rapidly expanding its boundaries as commercial and residential activities boom.

    There have been heavy investment in real estate over the last few years and speculation in the property and land business has sent the prices soaring. To support the latest projects, master plans and other development works are being done to provide infrastructure and meet other essential needs of life.

    The Northern By-pass is a big step in that direction and it is hoped that its development will further open the doors to prosperity of the city and its inhabitants.

    The value of all commercial and residential land, adjacent to this highway, is expected to increase as the area develops with the passage of time.

    Some of the builders and developers have launched housing schemes near the by-pass and its link roads as 10 such projects have been offered for booking, some of them facing the by-pass.

    The new housing projects announced under the residential scheme cover plots of 80, 100, 120, 200 and 400 yards, whereas commercial plots are up to 200 yards in Scheme 41 of the city.

    As far as prices of plots are concerned, the 100-yard plot costs Rs295,000 and the 400-yard plot Rs1,280,000. The prices of 120-yard plots vary in different housing projects, starting from Rs360,000 to Rs500,000 excluding development charges.

    The Northern By-pass will also enhance the importance of the city, the commercial hub of the country, because it will link the Super Highway with busy thoroughfares of the city, like I I Chundrigarh Road.

    The land in the city suburbs will take 15 to 20 years to develop, but they offer very good opportunities for investment.

    According to the developers and builders, all these schemes will be finalised in five years as per rules defined by the development and building control authorities and the buyers can take possession of the plots in the same period. But normally it does not happen that the owners get possession in the specified period.

    Some four other schemes offering plots to the people are also in the pipeline, but there is not a single project that can provide flats or small bungalows.

    However, the property schemes have seen wrongdoing in the past, particularly the sale of a single plot to more than one buyer, influence of land mafia and other issues.

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=41069
     
  7. Neo

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    'Karachi to soon emerge as a modern city'

    KARACHI (February 05 2007): City District Government Karachi (CDGK) has completed 90 percent work of mega projects at a cost of Rs 21 billion within 6-8 months and Karachi will soon emerge as a modern and beautiful city of the world. This was stated by Rauf Akhtar Farooqi, Project Director, Taameer-e-Karachi programme in an interview.

    "The city is fast developing under the dynamic leadership of Nazim Mustafa Kamal and he introduced a new development vision by completing mega projects like flyovers and under-passes just within 6-8 months which otherwise take years to complete", he said.

    He said that total outlay of Taameer-e-Karachi programme, which spans over the period 2005-07, stands at Rs 29 billion out of which Rs 5 billion are shared by federal government, Rs 6 billion by Sindh Government, Rs 6 billion by City Government and Rs 12 billion by stake-holders.

    He said the stake-holders include Pakistan Steels, Port Qasim Authority, Export Processing Zone Authority, Civil Aviation Authority, Military Land and Cantonments, National Logistic Cell, Export Promotion Bureau, Karachi Port Trust, Oil Companies, State Bank/Banks, DHA and Ministry of Works.

    He said KPT was assigned with the construction of a 2-level flyover at Hino Chowrangi at a cost of Rs 594 million, Rehabilitation of 4.55 Km long Mai Kolachi Bypass Rs 699 million, Rehabilitation of 2.56 Km long M.T. Khan Road Rs 266 million, Rehabilitation of M.A. Jinnah Road Rs 439 million.

    PQA is to carry out the completion of Shahrah-e-Mehran Rs 119.440 million, construction of 1.9 Km road from National Highway to Shahrah-e-Mehran Rs 250 million. EPA is to carry out feasibility and design of link corridor between Road 8000 and Shahrah-e-Mehran Rs 2.355 million.

    Pakistan Steels is constructing flyover at Quaidabad at a cost of Rs 217 million besides dualisation of link road connecting National Highway with Super Highway at a cost of Rs 575 million. PIA was to improve and rehabilitate University Road from Mazar-e-Quaid to Malir Cantt Rs 312 million while State Bank is to rehabilitate 2.25 Km I.I. Chundrigar Road Rs 230 million.

    Other projects included improvement and rehabilitation of 4.8 Km Shahrah-e-Ghalib Rs 266 million, improvement and rehabilitation of Sharea Faisal from Jinnah Terminal to Pakistan Steel Rs 630 million, construction of road from Super highway to Jinnah Terminal via Malir cantt. Rs 789 million, Road-8000 Korangi Rs 950 million, Bridge over Malir River connecting Shah Faisal Colony with Korangi No 10 Rs 1057.593 million, construction of Sohrab Goth Inter-change Rs 439.610 million.

    Rauf Farooqi said that City Government has already completed projects of three flyovers and three underpasses besides three newly constructed widened roads at Liaquatabad, Gharibabad and Nazimabad within 6-8 months for signal-free corridor-I from Site to Airport which has reduced the travelling time from 90 minutes earlier to mere 15-20 minutes.

    The total distance of this corridor from Karsaz to Site area is 10.5 Km and it has a width of 13.5 meter with four lanes each side containing 33 bus stops, seven pedestrian overhead bridges and two lane service road from each side including 12 meter high electric poles with 250 watts light fixtures.

    More over dedicated storm water drainage system built for all these mega projects with exclusive outlets in different adjoining rivers. He pointed out that one single corridor-I project consist of 9 mega projects costing over Rs 3 billion.

    It is for the first time in the history of Karachi that dedicated drainage system has been laid, besides strengthening of all the damaged water supply and sewerage system carried and wherever required new drainage system at some places and water supply system laid which increased diameter to cater present day requirements all along the corridor keeping in view the population density up to 2020.

    He said the foundation-stone of multi-million dollar project of 25 Km long elevated expressway from Quaidabad to Jinnah Bridge is going to be laid very soon while Pakistan's biggest Bagh Ibn-e-Qasim on 130 acres and costing over Rs 350 million will also be inaugurated shortly. It has exclusive illumination system and dedicated corridors while a big area developed for various events.

    Around the Bagh, the historic Kothari Parade has been renovated as a heritage.

    He pointed out that for the first time Nazim Karachi Mustafa Kamal has got Master Plan of Karachi up to the year 2020 prepared and all future projects would be implemented under this Master Plan.

    He further said that our all future projects would be completed by the year 2008. He clarified that elevated expressway will be completed in 36 months and 40 storeyed, the largest and tallest building Pakistan also in 36 months.

    Farooqi said that fast development process here has heightened the image of Karachi world over and this has attracted the investors and so far 900 million dollars investment made here.

    http://brecorder.com/index.php?id=525461&currPageNo=1&query=&search=&term=&supDate=

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  8. Neo

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    President Musharraf inaugurates signal-free corridor in Karachi

    KARACHI: President Pervez Musharraf here Friday formally inaugurated Rs. 3 billion signal-free corridor from SITE to Airport to reduce travelling time by one hour.

    Sindh Governor Dr Ishratul Ibad Khan, Chief Minister Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim, City Nazim Syed Mustafa Kamal and Naib Nazim Nasreen Jalil were also present on the occasion.

    Talking to journalists, President Musharraf said that this corridor was a mega project for the people of Karachi with enormous benefits. It will reduce travelling time and provide hassle free commuting.

    "This is a mega project. Cost does not matter. This is a project to facilitate people who live in Karachi, providing hurdle free and hassle free travel from SITE, Nazimabad and Liaquatabad to Drigh Road in just eight to ten minutes,", he added.

    "I have lived here and I know that people used to spend 20 minutes at each signal. They had to bear all the hassle of travelling on these routes. This corridor will reduce travel time by at least one hour. This will save petrol as well as save the driver from anguish," he observed.

    President Musharraf appreciated the City Government for completing this long corridor with six flyovers and underpasses in just 8 months and 20 days.

    "Earlier similar projects had taken five years. I congratulate them on accomplishing this task in such a record time," the President said.

    "This is very efficient and this is also sign of the financial and economic progress in the country. I also want to congratulate Karachiites who will use this corridor," he said.

    Earlier, City Nazim Syed Mustafa Kamal said that the project was implemented in a record short span of time.

    "We believe in serving people and this corridor passes from the areas where 60 to 70 per cent of Karachi's population lives," he noted.

    He said this project is sufficient for next 25 to 50 years. Every underpass has water ducts at the beginning and in the middle to syphon off water through drains to Orangi Nullah and Gujjar Nullah. In case of heavy rains and accumulation of water, the automatic motor will pump out water fast through drains, he added.

    Mustafa Kamal specially thanked the people of Karachi specially people living along the corridor for bearing with the inconveniences caused to them due to digging and traffic jams.

    "I pay tributes to them for their exemplary support during this period. They have seen that their leadership has brought results," he noted.

    He said that election is not the target and this is the reason that Haq Parast government has completed these flyovers and underpasses in record time.

    The News.
    http://thenews.jang.com.pk/updates.asp#17550
     
  9. A.Rahman

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    This is how Karachi will look like when its done:

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  10. Neo

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    February 14, 2007
    World Bank report: Karachi termed most business-friendly

    KARACHI, Feb 13: Karachi is at the top in Pakistani cities for doing business as it is the most business-friendly place in the country, said a World Bank report.

    Doing business became easier in India and Pakistan in 2005-06, according to a new regional report released on Tuesday by the World Bank and its private sector arm, IFC, entitled ‘Doing Business in South Asia 2007’.

    The report covers eight countries in South Asia region and examines 12 major cities in India, six in Pakistan, and four in Bangladesh.

    Karachi is at the top in Pakistan, while Dhaka ranks best in Bangladesh, said the report.

    Five reforms measures in India and two specific steps in Pakistan are mentioned to have reduced the time, cost, and hassle for businesses to comply with legal and administrative requirements, it said.

    No other South Asian economies improved business regulations in 2005-06, ranking the region last in the pace of global reforms.

    The report compares business regulations in the region with 175 economies around the world.

    The top-ranked countries are the Maldives (53) and Pakistan (74), followed by Bangladesh (88), Sri Lanka (89), Nepal (100), India (134), Bhutan (138) and Afghanistan (162). The report finds that entrepreneurs in South Asia face large regulatory obstacles to doing business and taxes are high.

    A standard company in India pays 81 per cent of commercial profits in taxes, while in Pakistan it takes 560 hours per year to comply with all tax regulations.

    In 2005-06, the pace of reform was slower in South Asia than in any other region, with only India and Pakistan starting to improve their business environment.

    In Pakistan, implementing each city's best practice would result in a 22-place jump in the global Doing Business rankings, from 74th to 52nd place.

    Within India, Hyderabad has the most business-friendly regulations.

    Mumbai is in 11th place, ahead of Kolkata. Typically, large urban centres, such as Mumbai and Kolkata, have a high volume of business, so regulatory and administrative bottlenecks create serious congestion.

    Our reporter adds from Islamabad: The cumbersome procedures and documentation for start-up business has placed Pakistan even behind Bangladesh and Nepal among the South Asian countries, says World Bank report.

    A large number of federal and provincial institutions are still involved in start-up, and documentation requirements are heavy. Start-up in Pakistan still requires a high number of procedures (11) — more than in 116 other countries, including Bangladesh (8), Nepal (7) and Sri Lanka (8). In the region, only India requires an equally high number (11).

    According to the World Bank report on Doing Business in South Asia, Pakistan’s procedures are cumbersome, require considerable documentation and involve six different agencies.

    On positive side, reforms in the early part of the decade cut start-up time by half. Start-up now takes 24 days, 8 days less than the South Asian average (32 days) and less than Bhutan (62 days), Sri Lanka (50 days), Bangladesh (37 days) and India (35 days).

    The cost of business is 21 per cent of income per capita, well below the South Asian average of 47 per cent, and compares favourably to all regional averages apart from those of the OECD (5 per cent) and Europe and Central Asia (14 per cent). Like all South Asian countries except for the Maldives, Pakistan did not impose a minimum capital requirement.

    City-wise analysis showed that costs are 25 per cent higher in Karachi than in other cities. By removing the stamp duty requirement in 2004, Faisalabad, Lahore, Sialkot and Peshawar all eliminated one procedure, one day and considerable cost — 16 per cent of income per capita — from the start-up process. Start-up time did not vary significantly across cities, with two more days required to register with the Registrar of Companies in Quetta than in Faisalabad, Lahore, Sialkot and Peshawar.

    As a first step, it was proposed that Karachi and Quetta can follow their neighbours’ example and eliminate the stamp duty for registration. Then the system for the different tax and social security registrations can be simplified.

    Pakistan ranks 89th in the world on the ease of dealing with licenses. Obtaining the necessary construction permits, licenses and inspections and securing utility connections for building a warehouse involves only 12 procedures, the fewest in the region after the Maldives. The process takes 218 days, fewer than only Nepal (424 days) and India (270 days) among the South Asian countries.

    The number of procedures and time needed to obtain construction licenses have increased in cities outside of Karachi — particularly in Faisalabad, Lahore, Sialkot and Peshawar — in part due to earthquake-related requirements and added environmental protections.

    Karachi, Sialkot and Faisalabad remain the more expensive cities in which to build a warehouse, but for different reasons. In Faisalabad and Karachi high costs for electrical connections made worse in Karachi by the high costs of water and sewage connections — account for almost a fifth of total costs and are estimated at almost 10 times the costs in other cities.

    http://www.dawn.com/2007/02/14/ebr1.htm
     
  11. Neo

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    Monday, February 26, 2007

    ‘DHA, Clifton may have mass-transit station’

    KARACHI: A station for DHA and Clifton would be considered in the second mass-transit corridor once arrangements for the first corridor (from Mereweather Tower to Sohrab Goth) were completed, City Nazim Mustafa Kamal said Sunday at a meeting called by the Defence Associations Coordination Committee (DACC).

    Earlier, DACC General Secretary, Aziz Suharwardy, had raised two issues in particular: the water supply from K-III, and incorporating a station for Clifton and DHA in the Mass-Transit Plan. He also supported Kamal’s demand for a common master plan for Karachi. Kamal said that even though five MGD of water was available from K-III, due to distribution constraints, water could only be supplied on alternate days. Thus, only half the quantity of water available could be delivered. New lines were being laid from Hasan Square towards Defence. These would be completed in four months, Kamal said.

    The local government was spending Rs 4.5 billion on infrastructure for sewerage, roads and water supply in the four industrial zones of Karachi, the nazim said. Moreover, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) would be bringing in US$ 800 million for subways and related development. Kamal appealed to citizens to assume responsibility for their city and to boycott polythene bags which caused destruction to sewerage systems.”

    Kamal told the audience that after obtaining special permission from the president and the prime minister, a state-of-the-art snorkel (worth Rs 700 million) was being imported. Moreover, he said, DHA needed to augment its infrastructure to handle the increase in water supply.

    Questions about security were also raised, but since the nazim is not in charge of law and order, he expressed his inability to answer them. He did promise, however, to convey the concerns to the authorities concerned.

    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2007\02\26\story_26-2-2007_pg12_2
     
  12. Neo

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    How easy is it to do business in Karachi?

    By Salman Siddiqui

    KARACHI: Doing business in Karachi - the country’s economic hub - became easier in 2005-06 as compared with other provincial capitals of Pakistan, according to a World Bank report. This is neither a miracle nor a new discovery for the business community. However, World Bank in its third annual report on “Doing Business in South Asia 2007”, released in mid-February 2007, states this, which the media has highlighted very prominently.

    Karachi has a rich history of doing business and remained capital of economic activities since its creation in 1728. Since then and till to date, none of the other cities of Pakistan dared to deprive Karachi of this front. The city is estimated to generate approximately 65 per cent of the total national revenue.

    The city has remained a hub of regional trade for last three centuries and would be celebrating its 300th birthday of recorded existence as a viable port in 2028.

    According to Arif Hasan, the author of “Understanding Karachi”, merchants of Karak Bunder founded the city for trade after Karak Bunder silted up due to heavy rains in 1728 and the harbour could no longer be used. Karak Bunder was a small port on the Arabian Sea on the estuary of the Hub River and transit point for the South Indian - Central Asian trade. Bunder is Arabic for port and is used in local language in the same context.

    Karachi saw trade activities increasing between 1729 and 1839 because of the silting up of Shah Bunder and Keti Bunder (important ports on the Indus). With all three important harbours, Karak Bunder, Keti Bunder, and Shah Bunder becoming redundant, Karachi became the main port in this area.

    A city, raised to its current glory by the Parsi and Hindu merchants under the British Raj, is a far cry from other urban centres of the country that are still steeped in feudal traditions. The psyche of Karachi reverberates with trade and commerce. Yet the local businessmen are found complaining of stifling bottlenecks and strangling red tapes.

    The World Bank report notes that the economic and corporate reforms have reduced the time, cost, and hassle for businesses to comply with legal and administrative requirements in city, is again good omen to welcome foreign investment in the country, but local businessmen are yet to be given priority by the authorities to have an edge over the foreigners or at least a level playing field in the country.

    Local businessmen are time and again found complaining of high input costs for doing business in this metropolis. They remained busy fighting against various SROs, trying hard to lower of utilities, seeking concessions and subsidies on exports, etc.

    While the government is always ready to accommodate pending problems of foreign investors, for locals it adopts an alien attitude most of the times.

    This is evident with the special concessions that government granted to Al-Tawirqi (UAE based steel producing company) that is yet to start its project in Karachi Export Processing Zone (KEPZ). Government permitted it a distinguish facility as this Company was allowed to dump its 80 per cent production in local markets. On the contrary, other local players in KEPZ are compelled to export 70 per cent of their production and remaining 30 per cent can be supplied in the local markets.

    Business community from various platforms of trade bodies has very recently criticized the 10 per cent increase in electricity charges by WAPDA.

    The trickle down effect of increase in WAPDA charges might later be seen in the city, as KESC buys roughly 600 mega watts of electricity from WAPDA, said majority of businessmen.

    In the post WTO quota regime, doing business in Pakistan for indigenous industries has become hard due to country’s so called liberal economic polices. Not only Pakistan, but also countries all across the globe are worried over the Chinese cheap products flooding their consumer markets. After China India is well poised to occupy majority of the world markets.

    While China and India move ahead in the world market Pakistan’s business community is raising a hue and cry over falling textile exports due to its neighbours’ low cost subsidised products capturing market share of Pak exporters.

    It is important to note that Pakistan’s trade deficit has reached an alarming level of $7.6 billion during July-Jan 2006-07 from $6.5 billion recorded in corresponding period last fiscal, depicting an increase of 16.92 per cent. During the period under review, exports stood at $9.6 billion and imports $17.2 billion.

    Tariq Saeed, Former President-FPCCI, found no problem in the country’s export procedure, but demanded of the government to lower input costs of doing business. Due to price hike on utilities or input costs the Pakistani exporters finding hard to compete in the world markets or have orders for shipment and consignments for exports, he added.

    Zubair Motiwala, Former President-KCCI, said that government has allowed round the clock shipments at Karachi Port, but it is yet to be implemented in its true spirit. Moreover, port authorities lack sniffing dogs that sniff consignment prior to their shipments for Western countries for security reason and anti-narcotics authorities open packed orders on port then they receive complaints of unpacked finished goods or shortage in quantity of the order for buyers, he added.

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=45762
     
  13. Moin91

    Moin91 SENIOR MEMBER

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    I will want to see karachi after karachi's master plane will completed:tup: :flag:
     
  14. Neo

    Neo RETIRED

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    Qatar to construct City Centre in Karachi

    KARACHI (March 16 2007): Government of Qatar will construct City Centre, a grand commercial centre in Karachi with the estimate investment of 2 billion dollar including the seven star hotel, shopping centre and offices. This was stated by ambassador of Qatar Hamad bin Ali Al-Hinzab who called on City Nazim Syed Mustafa Kamal in his office on Thursday.

    He also presented invitation of Qatar to City Nazim from the Ruler of Qatar Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani. The ambassador of Qatar while talking to newsmen said the co-operation of trade and investment are being increasing between the two countries which will also extend maximum facilities to the citizens of Pakistan and Qatar.

    He said the visit of Qatar's Amir of Pakistan is expected soon and he will visit Karachi to lay down foundation stone for the projects of Qatar's government. He further said the invitation from Qatar's Amir have been given to City Nazim Syed Mustafa Kamal and hoped that he will visit Qatar soon which will increase relations between these two countries.

    The City Nazim Syed Mustafa Kamal on this occasion said the Amir of Qatar is being visiting Pakistan on the invitation of President of Pakistan and he will lay down foundation stone for City Centre in Karachi. The project of City Centre, a grand commercial centre will be completed with the estimated cost of 2 billion dollar by Qatar government.

    He also assured that he will visit Qatar before the Amir of Qatar and it is expected in this current month. He further mentioned that during his visit to Qatar, the projects of Qatar government to invest in Karachi will be finalised.

    He pointed out that this will be a major investment in Karachi which is also being made on the present government's policies of public/private partnership.

    He also mentioned that the City District Government Karachi under the public/private partnership will grant land for the purpose of constructing City Centre and it will be a joint venture to increase revenue for city government while commercial and trade activities in city will boost. He further added that the work on this project will start within weeks.

    http://www.brecorder.com/index.php?id=538790&currPageNo=3&query=&search=&term=&supDate=
     
  15. Neo

    Neo RETIRED

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    Wednesday, March 21, 2007

    Over 300 old trees cut down to widen University Road

    KARACHI: The City District Government Karachi has cut down over three hundred mature trees along University Road over the last couple of days to widen the road and lay new water and sewerage pipelines.

    The trees are being removed for the rehabilitation of University Road. This includes the installation of new water pipelines of 54-inch and 48-inch diameters, that started on March 9 from Jail Chowrangi while work on the new sewerage line from old Sabzi Mandi to Hassan Square was started three weeks ago.

    The Gulshan-e-Iqbal town administration had asked a private contractor to cut down all the eucalyptus trees. “These eucalyptus trees are one of the major reasons that underground water and sewerage lines are damaged,” Town Nazim Wasay Jalil told Daily Times. “Their roots not only penetrate the pipelines but also damaging the boundary walls in the surrounding areas.”

    He said that they were not only removing these trees but were going to replace them with neem, palms and others as they were not hazardous for underground utility services. “So far the town administration had replaced the eucalyptus trees on Haider Ali Road, Alamgir Road and Sehba Akhter Road,” he added. “These types of trees also cause water contamination.”

    It is pertinent to mentioned that the city government had started a tree plantation campaign last year and vowed to plant 500,000 trees but so far only five percent of the work has taken place by different NGOs and schoolchildren.

    An engineer with the Karachi Water and Sewerage Board told Daily Times that the work on the lines was initiated due to the rehabilitation of the entire University Road from Peoples’ Chowrangi (near Islamia College) to Safoora Goth.

    One portion of the road till Jail Chowrangi has been completed and in the second phase they have started relocating and installing new water and sewerage projects from Jail Chowrangi to Hassan Square. After these are done, the road will be repaired for traffic as it has been dug up.

    Thus, one portion of University Road from Jail Chowrangi to New Town Police Station roundabout has been closed for traffic. Motorists now have to navigate through the inner streets of New Town or face the danger of two-way traffic on one carriageway.

    A major chunk of road opposite old Sabzi Mandi has also been dug up.

    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2007\03\21\story_21-3-2007_pg12_2