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50-year Gwadar plan in the offing



KARACHI: The government is committed to making Gwadar a ‘smart port city’ and in this regard a 50-year master plan and by-laws are being prepared for development activities, Director General Gwadar Development Authority (GDA), Shahzeb Khan Kakar said on Monday.

The GDA official, addressing members of the Association of Builders and Deve­lopers of Pakistan (ABAD), said all hurdles in Gwadar’s development have been removed and the city will be future Singapore.

Gwadar was set to become a modern city like Singapore 10 years ago but due to some mistakes this dream could not materialise but now these issues are being rectified, a press release issued by ABAD quoted the GDA official as saying.

Availability of water was a major issue in Gwadar but this problem is now being resolved as pipelines are being installed to bring in water from various dams while desalination plants are also being installed, he said.

Electricity is another issue but now a 300-megawatt power station is being established, he added.

Talking about the law and order situation in Gwadar, Kakar stressed that it is now the safest city in Pakistan.

He further said that Gwadar would become a digitalised city, with all records being digitised.

By 2050 Gwadar’s economic turnover would reach $30 billion and per capita income is expected to be $15,000 while Pak­­­istan’s current per capita income is $1,350.

Chairman ABAD Mohsin Sheikhani pointed out that GDA was established in 2004 but unfortunately Gwadar could not be developed as expected. He stressed that all stakeholders should be taken into confidence regarding the master plan and investors should be promised for not making any change in it.

Long-term and stable policy and provision of facilities to investors are necessary for development, he added.

Former chairman ABAD Junaid Ashraf Taloo suggested some changes in GDA by-laws to provide better investment environment to investors.

Published in Dawn, February 18th, 2020

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