PRIME Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi Wednesday performed the groundbreaking of the important Rs 17 billion Eastbay Expressway in Gwadar- a project that will go a long way in complete operationalization of Gwadar Port and what the Prime Minister said change the destiny of small fishing city into a global shipping port.
The 19.5 kilometres six lane Expressway will help in cargo handling through roads and increase connectivity with rest of the country. It will link the Gwadar port with the Makran Coastal Highway and improve logistic transportation of import and export. It was about a decade ago that the formal construction work on the deep sea port was started but the previous governments did not pay much attention in developing the necessary infrastructure that connects Gwadar with Quetta and rest of the country. Credit definitely goes to present government, which not only started work on the CPEC but also envisaged road projects that are now connecting the port city with rest of the country. Located on the shores of Arabian Sea, the geo-strategically located port has all the potential of becoming one of the world’s busiest ports like Singapore and Dubai and now with the development of necessary infrastructure, we have no doubt in saying that the day is not far off when we will see increased trading activities on its shores. While performing the groundbreaking of Eastbay Expressway, the Prime Minister was pertinent to say that benefits of the development in the area should reach the local people — something that is vital to remove sense of grievances of the people of Balochistan especially Gwadar. In this regard, we understand both China and Pakistan are working together to provide technical training in different trades to the local population that will definitely open doors of jobs for them at the port or at free economic zones. Similarly, we expect that focus will also be given to the development of shipbuilding in pursuit of development of industrial structure as it will have far reaching impact on our overall economy. Though it is a capital-intensive field where one has to constantly stay ahead of the competition in terms of production costs, quality, logistical planning, marketing skills and above all meeting deadlines. Once a shipbuilding enterprise takes off, the benefits are enormous. So joint ventures with investors possessing ample finances and experience can help Pakistan build its shipbuilding industry