Special Economic Zones to take shape from next month

Special Economic Zones to take shape from next month

ISLAMABAD: A major breakthrough regarding early start of construction work at Rashakai and other economic zones across the country is expected during the Prime Minister's visit to China next month, an official said on Tuesday.

“The government had already issued directives to the concerned authorities to remove all the obstacles to ensure early launch of Rashakai Economic Zone,” Hassan Daud Butt, Project Director China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), said while talking to Associated Press of Pakistan (APP).

He said the governments of both Pakistan and China had agreed that under the second phase of CPEC, nine Special Economic Zones (SEZs) would be constructed in all the four provinces, Gilgit Baltistan, FATA, and Azad Jammu and Kashmir to boost industrialisation across the country.

Butt said the land acquiring process for Rashakai Economic Zone, located in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's Nowshera district, was in progress and so far 2,000 acres of land had been acquired.

In the zone, the government would facilitate various local as well as foreign investors to establish their industries in different sectors including food packing, value-addition of fresh fruits and vegetables, textile stitching and netting, and other industries, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor official said.

He added that construction of industries in these Special Economic Zoness would not only help increase in economic activities in the country but also help boost country’s export besides creating hundreds of thousands employment opportunities.

Giving details about the geographical location of Rashakai Economic Zone, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor project director said it was 65 kilometers away

from the airport and dryport,

25 kilometers from railway station, 15 kilometer from city center, and only five kilometer away from motorway.

Replying to a question, Butt said the proposal of establishing special economic zone in Rashakai was given by the provincial government, and the federal government had nothing do to with the selection of the location for the zone.

With respect to other projects under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, Butt said China was making investment of over $56 billion in various projects under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor in Pakistan, out of which $34 billion was being spent on energy projects, most of which were either complete or in final stages.

Further, he said $24 billion worth of investment was being materialised in infrastructure and other sectors of the country.

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