Parliamentary Committee on CPEC briefed on special economic zones

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ISLAMABAD, May 25 (APP): The Parliamentary Committee on China
Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which met here at the Parliament
House with Mushahid Hussain Sayed in the chair, was briefed on
special economic zones (SEZs) to be established under the CPEC.
Privatization Commission Chairman Miftah Ismail briefed the
committee on the criteria for establishing SEZs as well as the
establishment of such SEZs under the CPEC.
He said nine sites for SEZs had been declared priority
sites under the CPEC and each province plus Federal area, Gilgit-
Baltistan had been allocated SEZs.
The sites, Miftah said, had been identified by the provincial
governments and there was close coordination between the federal and
the provincial governments.
A high level Chinese delegation will visit Pakistan in the
first week of June to see the sites and discuss their
feasibilities. The final decision will be made in consultation
between the Chinese and Pakistani sides.
The sites include Rashakai in Nowshera, Hattar, Sheikhupura,
Faisalable, Bostan near Quetta, Khuzdar, Thebaji and Keti Bandar
plus Gilgit and a federal industrial zone in Islamabad as well as
one near Port Qasim.
The parliamentary committee said it should be ensured that
the less-developed areas of Pakistan be given priority in development
so that they were brought at par with the more developed areas of
Pakistan.
The purpose of the SEZs, which were being open to all investors
both Pakistani and foreign, was also to attract the companies from
China which would be relocated abroad in the coming years, it noted.
The committee also directed the Ministry of Water & Power to
carry out a wind corridor survey in Khyber pakhtunkhwa and
Balochistan, which was being done and necessary monitoring stations
had been established in both provinces in that regard.
The Ministry of Water & Power briefed the committee that 700
megawatt electricity of wind power had been added to the national
grid while another 300 MW of solar energy was now connected to the
national grid, which was for the first time as renewable energy had
also become a factor in the energy mix in Pakistan.
Earlier Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed briefed the committee
about his participation in the highly-successful Belt & Road Forum
in Beijing which was held on May 14-15. The committee welcomed
the pro-active participation of Pakistan’s delegation in the
Belt & Road Forum led by the prime minister which included the
chief ministers of the four provinces.
He said the CPEC was the flagship project of the Belt & Road
Initiative.
He welcomed new member of the committee Senator Mir Kabeer
Ahmed Muhammad Shahi.
The committee decided that the next meeting would be devoted
to a briefing by the Minister for Planning & Development on the
long term plan of CPEC.
The meeting was attended by Federal Minister for Housing
and Works Akram Khan Durrani, MNAs Sardar Awais Ahmad Khan
Leghari and Asad Umar, senators Lt. Gen. (Retd) Salahuddin
Tirmizi, Shibli Faraz and Mir Kabeer Ahmed Muhammad Shahi, and
senior officers of the ministries of Planning, Development & Reforms,
Water & Power and Board of Investment of Pakistan.