Rashakai, SEZs to start new era of industrial development


The Board of Investment (BOI) on Tuesday said that Rashakai, Special Economic Zone will usher in a new era of industrial development in the country.

The Completion of Rashakai Economic Zone will encourage foreign investment and provide adequate facilities to foreign investors, the senior official of BOI told APP here.

The senior official said that to transform the trade corridor into a true economic corridor, BOI being the secretariat for SEZs and Industrial Cooperation under China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and a party to all the SEZ development agreements on the behalf of the Federal Government, after 9 long months of negotiations, on 14th September, facilitated signing of the quad-partite development agreement for the development of the first CPEC SEZ i.e. Rashakai SEZ, in KP.

Rashakai SEZ is to be developed in collaboration with a state-owned Chinese enterprise, that makes this development agreement first of its kind with Chinese counterpart being one of the parties to the development agreement, he said.

Replying to a question he said that by l FY2018-19, only 7 SEZs existed, while 6 of them had converted from their earlier status as Industrial estates(IEs) or industrial parks (IPs).

He said that Provision of Utilities from the Federal PSDP with BOI’s efforts and support of line ministries Rs. 19.9 billion have been earmarked in the PSDP for provision of utilities for all the SEZs over the period of 5 years.

He said that efforts are underway for more funding and use of other innovative models, such as captive power to cut the costs and release the burden o f such allocation.

The senior official said that BOI being the SEZ Authority for ICT, promoted the case for award of SEZ status to National Science and Technology Park, that is being developed by NUST for promotion of hi-tech industry and research and development.

He said the park was approved by the BOA in its 6th meeting held on 7th October 2020, and notified on 2nd December 2020, as an SEZ under the purview of the SEZ Act 2012 and was allowed certain exemptions by the BOA for its unique business model.

Considering the special needs of the hi-tech and IT sector on BOI’s proposal, amendments were made in the Customs Act 1969 to expand the custom duty exemptions to include the IT sector, he said.—APP

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