Gwadar Port to become formally operational next month: Hasil Bizenjo

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KARACHI: Gwadar Port will be formally operational and open to the world by end of next month and the first international expo will be held at Gwadar on January 29-30 to project the potential of Gwadar mainly of Special Economic Zone.

Gwadar Port is a deep-sea international port with a draught of more than 18 meters, where motherships can easily anchor at the port.

Federal Minister for Ports and Shipping Mir Hasil Khan Bizenjo also revealed that his ministry in next couple of weeks would float a tender for the construction of much talked about and long-awaited mega project of Elevated Expressway – linking Keamari, West and East Wharf to Northern Bypass. This would be operative in next two years.

He was speaking at a meeting of FPCCI Standing Committee on Ports and Shipping, here on Monday, which was attended by number of senior businessmen and officials of Ministry of Ports and Shipping, and of Karachi Port Trust, Pakistan National Shipping Corporation, Gwadar Port and Gwadar Development Authority. Chinese Overseas Ports Holding Company Chairman was prominent at this event organised by Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

Ports and Shipping minister invited private sector of the country to come ahead and operate ferry services within or outside the country including Chabahar Port, Dubai and Qatar.

The government would never operate any ferry service. It was the job for local private sector. The government would only support and facilitate the businessmen, he said.

“Now, we have a policy for running ferry service. We would do nothing more but give you permission for this service,” he asserted adding that for operating ferry locally around KPT or up to Port Qasim, the government would provide a plot for the operation without any charges for the good of general public and businessmen.

He stressed the local investors to lead in development of associated facilities to Gwadar Port, Gwadar City and Special Economic Zone there, and other CPEC linked mega projects in Balochistan. Also, the local businessmen could set up resorts and entertainment facilities along coastal highway, at Ormara and Gwadar.

On pointation, Bizenjo assured that the Ports and Shipping would revise KPT charges to minimum possible level as the government wanted to extend maximum facilitation to the exporters and importers for promoting trade and industry.

For strengthening PNSC, he said three more vessels were being purchase; for which very shortly the tendering would be done.

On this occasion, Federal Minister for Ports and Shipping Mir Hasil Khan Bizenjo said,” I want to send a clear message to everyone that the general elections shall be held on the schedule. Pakistan Army is very much supporting democratic set up. The government shall complete its tenure.”

The Chinese Overseas Ports Holding Company Chairman appreciated the support and cooperation from Pakistan government and Balochistan government, Pakistan Army and the civilian populations in successfully carrying forward/executing the Gwadar Port and associated facilities.

He gave a presentation on Gwadar Port and its future expansion projects.

He said the first phase of the port had been completed.

Frontier Works Organisation’s Director Logistic, Brig Raheemuddin Farooqui gave a presentation on road and railways connectivity between Gwadar and other areas of the country; especially CPEC linkages.

Other speakers included PNSC Chairman Rizwan Ahmed, GDA Chairman Dost Muhammad Khan, FPCCI President Zubair F Tufail, FPCCI former president S M Muneer, FPCCI Standing Committee on Ports and Shipping Chairman Tariq Haleem.