Lahore—Governor Gilgit-Baltistan Mir Ghazanfar Ali Khan has said that Gilgit-Baltistan has huge potential of investment as with the coming of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) the investment scope has been widen and deepened. He expressed these views while talking to the LCCI Senior Vice President Almas Hyder here at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry. Former LCCI Presidents Mian Shafqat Ali, Sohail Lashari, former Vice President Aftab Ahmed Vohra, Executive Committee Members Mian Zahid Javed, Abdul Razaq, Nasira Taskeen, Adnan Khalid Butt, Zahid Maqsood, Nasira Taskeen, Zafar Mahmood, Shahzad Waheed, Rizwan Shamsi and other were present on the occasion.
The Governor said that introduction of CPEC and GB being gateway to CPEC, the strategic and socio economic importance of GB has increased manifolds and it is a win-a-win situation for the potential investors. He said that law and order situation in GB is not an issue which is the most attractive factor for investment. He said that potential investor must explore investment potential of GB. He said that Gilgit-Baltistan ha huge potential in trade with China, tourism, minerals, gems, precious stones and hydropower. He said that as per the report of GIZ and WAPDA, GB has potential to generate more than 40 thousand mega watt hydropower electricity.
Mir Ghazanfar said that a single project Bunji Tunnel can generate 7100 MW of electricity. He said that investment in hydropower projects would get rich benefits. He said that maximum cooperation would be extended to all the investors who would be making investment in Gilgit-Baltistan. He said that organic farming has a very huge potential for the investment because of the availability of a very hardworking human resource and with little crime rate in all the seven districts of Gilgit-Baltistan. Governor GB informed the participants that literacy rate of GB is 56% and by 2018, it will be reached 72%. He said that one of the districts of GB, Hunza has almost 100% literacy rate which is unique in Pakistan.
Speaking on the Occasion, the LCCI Senior Vice President Almas Hyder said that Gilgit-Baltistan sectors like hydro energy, dry food, and precious stones are the actual treasure, which, if thoroughly tapped, will change the fate of this region. He said that the investment in Gilgit-Baltistan would not only be beneficial to that particular area but it would also help strengthen the economy of the country. Almas Hyder said that Gilgit-Baltistan has vast reserves of precious and semi-precious stones but a large part of these minerals export in raw shape because of unavailability of latest technology.
He said that government should focus this area as export of value added gems could earn huge revenue for the country. He also urged the Governor GB to arrange exhibitions in all major cities of the countries in collaboration with the local chambers. While stressing the need for investment in hospitality industry of GB, the LCCI Senior Vice President said that availability of up to the mark hospitality facilities would attract the tourists. He urged the GB government to give maximum incentives to the potential investors. He said that direct flights from Lahore and Karachi to Gilgit-Baltistan would also yield good results while GB government should also take international tour operators on board to highlight the tourism potential of this beautiful piece of land.
Almas Hyder said that the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry is making all out efforts to highlight the hidden potential of Gilgit-Baltistan and a number of festivals have been organized in this regard. He said that Gilgit-Baltistan is not only a land of peace but it is hub of opportunities in true sense of the word. He said that the country could get rid of shortage of electricity once for all if the hydel potential available in the area is tapped.