PM unveils string of development projects for Balochistan including 174-km Sibi-Kohlu road
Gwadar—Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has said that development projects worth billions of rupees being implemented in Balochistan will guarantee progress and prosperity of the province and Gwadar city, which was the most backward would emerge as prosperous.
Addressing the inauguration ceremony of different development projects in Gwadar on Thursday, he said these projects will be completed in the next two to three years.
The Prime Minister said he is very happy to see that Gwadar is transforming into an international city. He said Gwadar has the potential to become a world class sea port. He said it is a place which is not only important for Pakistan, but also for the region and the world.
He said Gwadar which used to be most backward city of Pakistan is becoming most prosperous city of the region. He said that Gwadar seaport is nerve centre of China Pakistan Economic Corridor. He said Gwadar is Balochistan and Balochistan is Gwadar and similarly Gwadar is Pakistan and Pakistan is Gwadar.
The Prime Minster said he was very pleased to witness Gwadar develop as an international city as his dream of 1991 was eventually coming true.
He regretted that the pace of development initiated by him in 1991 was disrupted and said had there been continuity in his tenure Gwadar Port city would have been developed long time back and contributed to national development.
The Prime Minister also witnessed inking of several agreements for different projects between Pakistani and Chinese companies.
Nawaz Sharif said 300 MW coal fired power plant would help energise the various projects, a de salination plant and a US 39 billion dollar international airport and an efficient train service. He said Gwadar would be connected to Motorway and road network through various US 100 billion projects besides it would also have a vocational training centre and a Rs four billion university.
Prime Minister Sharif appreciated the role of armed services of the country, law enforcement agencies, police and all others who through their sacrifices and hard work bring in peace and stability to the province.
He said terrorists were on the run and were making last ditch efforts by striking soft targets, however was optimist that they would fail miserably in their nefarious designs.
He said the newly inaugurated projects worth Rs fifty billion would help create 50,000 jobs and directed that the people of Gwadar and adjoining areas be given preference as it was their due right. He said the people of entire province would benefit from creation of new jobs.
He was specially grateful to the Chinese government for its support and making development in the Port city a success.
He was also appreciative of Chinese role in helping Pakistan on the economic front and undertaking a string of infrastructure, energy and development projects. He also lauded China’s role as a “true friend” and thanked the Chinese ambassador for announcing more funding for various projects in the city.
Sharif said several coal fired projects in other parts of the country would help enhance efficiency of the industries and through its solar, wind and hydel projects the country would soon get rid of loadshedding by generating 10,000 MWs by 2018.
Chief Minister Balochistan Sanaullah Zehri lauded the personal efforts of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in the development of the most remotest area of the country and pointed out a number of challenges that the federal government overcame to make the dream a success.
He said the Real Estate business in area that had plunged in the past was now escalating at a rapid rate. He mentioned a number of projects that were in different phases of completion. These include road, hospital and vocational training institutions. He said the first phase of Gwadar Free Port would complete in 2017.
He hoped that the entire Gwadar Port project upon completion would help create 50,000 jobs. He called for early completion of 50,000 gallons for provision of clean drinking water through a de salination plant.
Minister for Ports and Shipping Hasil Bazinjo said development of Gwadar Port reflected vision of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. He described Gwadar as Balochistan and Balochistan as Gwadar.
Ambassador of China to Pakistan Sun Weidong said he was pleased to join as partners in development of Gwadar and mentioned his country’s support for construction of Gwadar Free Zone and handing over a school for the local people.
The Chinese ambassador said the local people of Gwadar and those along the path of China Pakistan Economic Corridor would benefit the most and lead to economic development of Pakistan and the entire region.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif also inaugurated the 174-kilometer road connecting Sibbi with Kohlu. The multi-billion rupee project is the shortest road link between Balochistan and Punjab provinces.
Work on the project was halted in 2006 owing to law and order situation. However, it was revived after the government signed a contract with National Logistics Cell in 2014 to accomplish the half-complete project.
Earlier, the people of Sibi had to travel through DI Khan and Lora Lai to reach Kohlu and now the distance had been shrunk to 174 kilometers from 600 kilometers, he added.—APP