BEIJING (China), April 16 (APP): Gwadar, the third deep-water
port in Pakistan, now operates three multifunctional piers with an
annual throughput capacity of between 50,000 and 70,000 20-foot
equivalent units, as well as bringing 20,000 jobs to locals.
The port will also serve as a trade gateway for East and
Central Asian countries to other parts of the world, according
to Chairman, China Communications Construction Co, Liu Qitao
After the completion of the construction, CCCC will also
be responsible for a series of follow-up projects, such as
the operation of a free-trade zone in Gwadar Port, he told
After completion of 60 percent of first-phase construction
of Gwadar’s free zone, the Chinese engineers and their Pakistani counterparts are hoping the free zone is open to operation as
early as possible, Hu Yaozong, deputy general manager of the
Gwadar Free Zone Company said.
The free zone is a key step towards developing the Gwadar
port into an important regional hub that will benefit not
only south Asia, but also the countries in central Asia
and the Middle East.
The free zone covers about 923 hectares of land and will
be developed in four phases. It is designed to take advantage
of Balochistan’s rich fishery and mineral resources to develop
relevant industries for overseas market and to develop light
industry for the domestic consumption.
As a part of the light industry plan, China’s Linyi overseas
market, a comprehensive shopping mall project, will soon be
introduced into the free zone.
“The Linyi market in Gwadar will develop an overseas warehouse
so as to make their goods not only available in the Pakistan
market, but also in markets around the region,” said Hu.
According to Hu, the first round of investment has almost
completed with projects on fishery and electric motors settled
and business center enterprises moved in.
The second-phase construction of the free zone is featured
with a huge stainless steel factory, which, Hu added, would
create a considerable number of jobs for locals in Gwadar,
which has a population of less than 100,000.
With the further development of the port and free zone,
work forces in other villages around Gwadar are expected
to flow into Gwadar.
According to the deputy general manager, a training school
donated by China, will be completed soon. After short-term
training, local people are expected to find a position in the
developing Gwadar, he said.
Munir Ahmad Jan, director general of the Gwadar Port
Authority (GPA), also shows high expectations on Gwadar’s
Besides Chinese and Pakistani investors, a lot of investors
from other countries have come to the GPA to consult on
business opportunities in the free zone, he said.
He said as businesspeople have seen the bright future of
the Gwadar port, a lot of Pakistani real estate investors
came to Gwadar to purchase land.
The development of the Gwadar port is not only in the
economic field, but also at a broader social level.
The medical center, which will come into service as early
as in May, is designed to carry out basic diagnosis and
treatment, conduct small surgeries and emergency rescues.
It will initially be operated by Chinese medical teams
and be gradually handed over to the Pakistani side in
In September last year, a China-donated primary school
came into use in Gwadar. The school had planned to enroll
about 150 pupils, but more than 300 students of different
grades attend the school as many locals believed that the
school had better teachers and facilities.