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Gwadar port city development project | News and Updates

The first container line service between Karachi, Gwadar and the Gulf was successfully initiated on Wednesday, increasing connectivity of the Balochistan port.

According to the statement issued by China Ocean Shipping Company (COSCO), the new service rotation of Port Qasim – Karachi – Gwadar – Jebel Ali – Sharjah – Abu Dhabi – Jebel Ali – Port Qasim connects Gwadar with global trading hubs of the regions.

The container line service of COSCO Shipping Line is an integral part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) which connects Afghanistan, the Central Asian states and western China.

“Since the initiation of KGS (Karachi-Gwadar-Gulf Service), Gawadar Port has operationally connected with the world’s seaports,” the statement read. “Tax incentives for the investors of Gwadar Free Zone has also been approved by the ECC (Economic Coordination Committee) during the last meeting held on August 2019 in Islamabad”

These incentives will be notified in the coming days, the statement added.

According to the press statement, Gwadar port is targeting the large untapped market of coastal trade between national seaports, Afghan Transit Trade (ATT), regional transshipments and exports and imports.

“Trade of multiple commodities from Balochistan especially seafood, fruits, vegetables, marble, minerals and many other locally available commodities are anticipated to be highly benefitted to uplift the local market of Gwadar and its close proximity,” the statement read.

An awareness campaign will also be launched to gain the confidence of the investors and stakeholders.
ECNEC approved construction of a four-lane 18.98 km long Expressway on East Bay of Gwadar Port at a cost of Rs17.369 billion to link Gwadar Port with the Makran Coastal Highway N-10 as well as with Gwadar Free Zone and future container terminals.

Govt sets up CPEC authority, grants tax relief to Gwadar port

October 7, 2019
ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi on Monday promulgated two ordinances to set up the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Authority and grant tax concessions to the Gwadar port and its free zone, sending a strong signal to Beijing that Islamabad is serious in implementing the multibillion dollar strategic initiative.

The ordinances were promulgated on the eve of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s visit to China where he is scheduled to discuss economic and political matters of mutual interests with the friendly country’s leadership.

“The CPEC Authority Ordinance 2019” and “The Tax Laws (Amendment) Ordinance 2019” are aimed to set up a new body to oversee and implement CPEC and give income tax, sales tax and custom duties exemptions to Gwadar port and Gwadar Free Zone.

The National Development Council — a joint forum of the civilian and military leadership — had approved the setting up of the CPEC Authority and extending tax concessions to Gwadar port in line with the Gwadar Port Concession Agreement.

How China views itself and the world

The military had floated idea of the CPEC Authority in 2016. However, the then prime minister Nawaz Sharif had shot it down. Last month, a joint parliamentary committee on CPEC also opposed the setting up of the authority through a presidential ordinance.

Through the ordinance, the government has given vast financial and administrative powers to the CPEC Authority — including making its executives immune to legal prosecutions and giving it the powers to make its own budget.

The CPEC Authority will build on the work carried out by the CPEC secretariat. During the PML-N government, about $50 billion contracts were announced under CPEC out of which about $28 billion got matured.

The challenge in front of the CPEC Authority would be to attract more Chinese financing into CPEC projects.

However, the test case for the government will be the $9 billion Main Line-I project. It is to be seen if it has the strength to go ahead with one the biggest components of CPEC, which is facing delays due to the government’s administrative weaknesses and financial constraints due to the IMF programme.

The CPEC Authority has been placed under the Planning, Development and Reform Division under the Rules of Business of 1973.

It will have the powers to enter into contracts, acquire and hold property — both movable and immovable — and it sue and be sued in its name, according to Section 3(2) of the ordinance.

The government has given complete financial autonomy to the authority. It will have complete powers to make its budget and that would be reviewed by the three-member Budget Committee comprising its own executives.

“All investments made by the authority shall be [made] with the approval of the budget committee”, according to Section 9(3) of the ordinance.

There will be a CPEC Fund, which shall vest in the authority and shall be utilised by the authority to meet all expenses and charges, according to Section 10 of the ordinance.

The sources of the CPEC Fund will be grants obtained by the authority, proceeds of investments made by the authority, loans obtained by the authority and any funds allocated by the federal government.

The authority will also have freedom to open and maintain its own bank accounts at scheduled banks.

This section of the ordinance appears in contravention to the Public Finance Management Act of 2019 that binds to keep all government proceeds in a single treasury account.

The authority will consist of a chairperson, chief executive Officer, executive director (operations), executive director (research) and six members.

The appointing authority of the chairperson, executive directors and members is the prime minister who can appoint them for a period of four years. The CEO will be minimum grade-20 civil servant.

Complete immunity has been ensured to the authority leadership and no case can be filed against them. The chairperson, executive directors and members cannot be civil servants. The top hierarchy of the authority will be deemed as public servants.

The authority has been given vast powers to call for any information related to CPEC activities, and in case of failure to provide the information, the authority will have powers to impose penalties on those who defy its orders.

The confidentiality of the information has been ensured and “no person shall communicate, or allow to be communicating, any record or information pursuant to this ordinance, to a person not legally entitling to that record or information or allow any person not legally entitled to that record or information to have access to any record obtained under this Ordinance.

“The authority shall be primarily responsible for coordination, monitoring and evaluation to ensure implementation of CPEC-related activities.

The authority shall exercise its powers and perform its functions in line with the framework and memorandum of understanding signed between Pakistan and China, and decisions taken at meetings of the Joint Cooperation Committee.

The CPEC authority will interface with China for identifying new areas of cooperation projects. It will organise the meetings of the JCC and joint working groups of CPEC and ensure inter-provincial and inter-ministerial coordination for CPEC-related activities.

The authority has also been tasked with building narrative of CPEC and undertaking research for long-term planning. The authority will hold at least one quarterly meeting. A CPEC Business Council will also be set up under the CPEC Authority.

The Tax Laws Amendment Ordinance 2019 is aimed at granting concessions to Gwadar port operators and businesses to be set up at the Gwadar free zone.

Through the ordinance, the government has amended the Income Tax, Sales Tax and Customs acts to give tax concessions.

After the legal changes, Chinese are expected to make some major investments in Gwadar.

Gwadar Masterplan shows how the old town will be transformed into a vibrant region to attract tourism with retail and hotels.


The Masterplan for Gwadar details some exciting developments for the port city center
ISLAMABAD, (APP - 17th Oct, 2019 ) :Minister for Energy Omar Ayub Khan said the process of hiring technical experts for setting up an oil refinery at the Gwadar deep seaport, an ultimate destination of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), had been started and would be completed in next three months.

"The refinery, having 250,000 to 300,000 barrels per day capacity, will help Pakistan cut its annual crude oil import bill by around $3 billion," he said in a recent interview with Arab news.

He said this was the first phase of Saudi investment in Pakistan "and as soon as they will start achieving targets, another phase of investment would start." Omar Ayub said work had commenced on $14.5 billion energy and petroleum projects in collaboration with Saudi Arabia.

The minister said that Saudi investment would help Pakistan achieve its target of shifting 30 percent of its energy needs to the renewable energy sector by 2030.

"In the power sector, Saudis are helping us install 500 megawatts renewable energy projects worth $4.5 billion in Balochistan and a $10 billion mega oil refinery in Gwadar, which are part of the $20 billion investment announced during Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman's visit to Pakistan earlier this year," the minister said.� Currently, only about 5 to 6 percent of the power to national grid comes from renewable energy, according to the country's Alternate Energy Development board (AEDB).

"Studies have been carried out by Saudi company Aqua Power, Pakistani National Transmission and Despatch Company (NTDC) and other leading companies to look into hybrid or solar projects. This will be a total $4.5 billion investment," he added.� During a visit to Pakistan in February this year by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the two countries signed short, mid and long-term investment agreements worth over $20 billion, including for energy and petroleum projects.

Short-term projects signed in February include two Regasified Liquefied Natural Gas plants for $4 billion, a $2 billion investment by Saudi power producing company ACWA Power in Pakistan's renewable energy sector and a $1 billion Saudi Fund for Pakistan.

Mid-term projects include $1 billion each for petrochemical complex, food and agricultural projects. The long-term investments are $10 billion for the construction of the multi-billion-dollar Saudi Aramco oil refinery in Gwadar and $2 billion for the minerals sector.

The minister said the power projects, which were in the pipeline, also included a solar plant of 200-megawatt at the Habibullah coastal power station in Balochistan and a 100-megawatt plant each in three other districts of the province.

"Alternative Energy Development Board cleared the draft renewable energy policy last week, in which we are taking renewable energy from the current 1,500 megawatts to approximately, 8000 megawatts by the end of 2025, and then to 20,000 megawatts by 2030," he said.

Omar Ayub said Saudi Arabia and Pakistan were also collaborating to explore minerals in the Balochistan province to promote indigenous exploration and production activities in both the oil and gas sectors.

"We would be auctioning approximately 40 blocks in the exploration and production sphere in Pakistan. In this process, we welcome Saudi companies to participate in upstream exploration activities," he said.

"Aramco is already working in the downstream exploration activities in Pakistan and we would welcome more Saudi companies to come in Pakistan for investment, whether it is upstream, middle stream or downstream."He also welcomed Saudi participation in the CPEC energy and infrastructure development projects.

"It is a good opportunity for Saudis as well as other Middle Eastern companies to invest in Pakistan as it is next door to a big market like China," the minister said.
Balochistan Launched Gwadar Master Plan 2050, Preservation of Historical Sites to be top priority

The government of Balochistan presented the Gwadar Master Plan 2050 in which it was decided that no old neighbourhoods of the city would be relocated, and preservation of the old status of the city would be the objective. Balochistan Government authorised the Gwadar Development Authority (GDA) to begin the work on development projects in the city. GDA Chief Engineer Syed Muhammad Baloch said a ground-breaking ceremony was already held and GDA started working to restore and maintain Omani era sports venues in the city. To curb environmental hazards, GDA is working on greenery projects, and a new greenbelt would be created for the people of Gwadar.


Wow, Gwadar looks like the gulf, similar landscape and building styles!!

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