BoI committed to developing four SEZs in six months: chairman

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ISLAMABAD: Board of Investment (BoI) Chairman Haroon Sharif said on Wednesday that the investment board is committed to completing four special economic zones (SEZs) related to the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) within six months.

These CPEC-related SEZs had been established in all four provinces, including Rashakai Economic Zone (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa), Dhabeji (Sindh), Allama Iqbal Industrial City in Faisalabad (Punjab) and Bostan Indusrial Zone (Balochistan), he said while talking to APP.

Replying to a question regarding Rashakai Economic Zone, he said recently, a delegation of China Road and Bridge Cooperation (CRBC), led by Director Shi Xiaobo, had visited BoI to discuss the timelines to make the economic zone operational.

He said Rashakai had a strategic significance as it was closer to Afghanistan and Central Asian countries.

Discussing the importance of Rashakai, Sharif said that the Chinese had termed it as a role model project for other SEZs.

He said Rashakai was a joint venture between the Chinese company CRBC and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government aiming to provide the facility of ease of doing business in the area.

“The BoI is strengthening its capacity by establishing specific desks and teams to deal with investors from different countries, as well as to work on important assignments, including all SEZs,” Sharif added.

He said during the meeting, the CRBC delegation discussed the incentive packages for Rashakai Economic Zone including the provision of modern and hi-tech facilities to the investors.

Replying to another question, he said all seven proposed SEZs would be completed in the next two years. The completion would promote ease of doing business in the country and would facilitate the local and foreign investors, he added.

“We will need to acquire 5,000 acres of industrial land to complete all SEZs in the country in order to generate equal business opportunities for all,” he maintained.

Replying to a question, he said SEZ in Hattar was also a priority of BoI, adding that electricity issue had halted the completion of economic zones but matters in this regard had been resolved in March this year.

To a query regarding SEZ in Islamabad, he said the development of engineering or information technology zones was in process in line with the board’s plan to establish a hi-tech zone in the federal capital.

He said work on the SEZ in Islamabad would be finalized in the coming two weeks and the project would be completed on time.

“Timely completion of the project would increase business and investment opportunities, besides generating maximum employment opportunities.”

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