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Showing posts from November, 2020

Pakistan Army set to gain sweeping Belt and Road authority

Bill grants military-linked body carte blanche over $50bn CPEC projects The Pakistan Army's construction and engineering unit is to be a big beneficiary of a controversial bill expected to pass in December, analysts say.   © Reuters MIFRAH HAQ, Contributing writer November 30, 2020 15:02 JS KARACHI -- Pakistan is set to pass legislation that would place a supranational body that oversees the $50 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, part of Chinese President Xi Jinping's flagship Belt and Road Initiative, under control of a Pakistan Army that would also gain sweeping powers. A parliamentary committee earlier this month passed the CPEC Authority Bill 2020 despite strong opposition from some lawmakers. According to Junaid Akbar, chairman of the parliamentary committee, the bill will be presented to parliament for a final vote in the second week of December. Pakistan's government under Prime Minister Imran Khan and the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party, considere

Pakistan’s ‘three evils’, CPEC and good governance

26 November 2020 Author: Shyam Tekwani, APCSS Setbacks to the China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) continue to mount, having  spluttered along  since its announcement as a showpiece of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in April 2015. CPEC may be further impeded by the recent  alliance  between Baloch and Sindhi  separatist  groups against Chinese interests, escalating  security threats  from the so-called  ‘three evils’  in Pakistan —  terrorism ,  religious extremism , and  ethnic separatism .  Pakistan must rein in the ‘three evils’ through good governance if CPEC is to ever take hold. Pakistan has long struggled as a perpetrator and victim of the first evil, terrorism. Last month’s decision by the United Nations Financial Action Task Force to  retain Pakistan on the grey list  for failing to  dismantle terrorist  financial infrastructure, despite repeated warnings, is indicative of Islamabad’s  inconsistent  approach to countering terrorism. Pakistan’s  blasphemy law  remain

Baloch professor goes missing; Another incident of enforced disappearance?

Baloch professor goes missing; Another incident of enforced disappearance?         29 November, 2020 by  ANI Khuzdar [Balochistan], November 29 (ANI): A Baloch professor Liaquat Sani Bangulzai has been "adducted" while travelling to Khuzdar district in Balochistan along with two other university teachers on Saturday, officials said. The two other professors -- Prof Shabbir Shahwani and Prof Nizam Shahwani -- were later found in the Kanak area along Quetta-Taftan highway, Dawn reported. However, there has been no trace of Liaquat Sani. Officials of the Balochistan University said Dr Liaquat Sani had left Quetta on an official duty along with two other professors to visit the examination centres in Khuzdar, but they could not reach Khuzdar as unidentified armed men intercepted their car in the Mastung area and took them away at gunpoint. The vehicle was found abandoned in the Paringabad area of Mastung district and two of the teachers were recovered from the Kanak area. A spoke

First 9-hole golf course inaugurated in Gwadar

15 hours ago Web Desk       ISLAMABAD – A first of its type nine-hole golf course in Gwadar is something the crown jewel of China Pakistan Economic Corridor was missing till now.  Shahid Ali Director, Gwadar Development Authority inaugurated the golf course on the N10 Coastal Highway in a ceremony on Friday. The golf course, which was previously planned to be six holes, has been upgraded to a feature nine-hole golf course and is expected to complete within 18 months. The golf course which will be Gwadar’s first is located within a luxury residential community by the name of China Pak Golf Estates by CPIC Global.


Published   29 Nov, 2020   06:55a   MUHAMMAD AKBAR NOTEZAI Over the decades, the situation in Balochistan has transformed a lot for all the wrong reasons. The policymakers of the country have not done much for the region and, in a similar vein, neither have researchers nor writers done any remarkable work for the purpose of initiating a constructive and healthy debate surrounding Balochistan’s issues. As a journalist from the province, having read several books on Balochistan, I have started to believe in the fact that most works are, one way or another, a rhetorical rehashing of the same old discussions. As a result, no new knowledge is disseminated despite ‘new’ books being churned out fairly frequently. They all repeat the same reservations about the region’s resources, exploitation, deprivation and other economic and political woes. And, unlike foreign authors and researchers, the problem with most local authors is that their writings lack substantial research — which is why, inste

Hainan to present Belt and Road Initiative's potential at tourism carnival

Business & Economy November 27, 16:43 HAIKOU, November 27. /TASS/. During the 21st Tourism Island International Carnival, the Hainan authorities plan to unleash the tourism potential of the Belt and Road Initiative and use interagency mechanisms to promote new products that are in high demand among tourists, reported the Hainan Daily newspaper, citing the official program of the complex event. According to the newspaper, thanks to the carnival, the Hainan administration is going to turn tourism into a "new driving force", which will activate both the cultural sphere and sports, exhibition activities, and trade. Such a cross-industry site is expected to attract even more tourists to the Island of Hainan. According to the announced schedule, entertainment events will last until early January 2021. They will be held not only in the largest cities of the island of Haikou and Sanya, where large-scale cultural and entertainment projects are often organized, but also in many oth

Balochistan governor for reducing infant mortality rate

National Muhammad Ejaz Khan November 28, 2020 QUETTA: Expressing concern over the high infant mortality rate in Pakistan, the Governor of Balochistan, Justice Amanullah Khan Yasinzai, has underlined the need to work on the principles of... Share Next Story >>> QUETTA: Expressing concern over the high infant mortality rate in Pakistan, the Governor of Balochistan, Justice (retd) Amanullah Khan Yasinzai, has underlined the need to work on the principles of primary healthcare so that children may not remain deprived of basic healthcare facilities across the country and, by doing so, we can significantly reduce the infant mortality. The governor was addressing the inaugural session of the 25th Hybrid Biennial International Paediatric Conference here on Friday evening. The three-day conference, being attended by eminent paediatricians from all over the country besides abroad, has been organized by the Pakistan Paediatric Association (PPA). The theme of biennial is: “Moving towards

Treading the pathway to progress

Islamabad Our Correspondent November 28, 2020 Islamabad : Though government of Balochistan is providing the technical and vocational education and training services through the labour and manpower, social welfare and education department, it... Islamabad : Though government of Balochistan is providing the technical and vocational education and training (TVET) services through the labour and manpower, social welfare and education department, it faces challenges such as incapacity of instructors, outdated curriculum, obsolete machinery and limited material for training. The INGOs and NGOs are also working in the TVET sector. The TVET system in Balochistan has limited access, especially to the unskilled youth. Industrial development, a key to economic growth of any region, has not been focused upon though Balochistan consists of 44 per cent of landmass of Pakistan. Therefore, the youth unemployment rate is very high in the province. Majority of youth in Balochistan are employed in on-farm

OGDC discovers gas reserves in Balochistan

Discovery has opened new avenue, will add to hydrocarbon reserves Our Correspondent  |  November 28, 2020     The Senate agreed that natural gas would not be provided to high-rise buildings and new housing schemes through the Sui gas transmission system. PHOTO: REUTERS ISLAMABAD: Oil and Gas Development Company (OGDC) has reported that it has found gas deposits in exploratory well Lakhirud X-1 in Musa Khel district, Balochistan, which will slightly reduce import pressure. "Based on logs data, the well was tested at a rate of 2.5 million standard cubic feet per day (mmcfd) of gas and 18 barrels per day of water," OGDC Company Secretary Ahmed Hayat Lak said in a notice sent to the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) on Friday. The oil and gas exploration firm is the 100% operator of Lakhriud exploration licence. The discovery has opened new avenue and would add to the hydrocarbon reserves base of OGDC, he said. OGDC's share price dropped Rs1.63, or 1.61%, and closed at Rs99.60 wi

Balochistan violence dates back to "brutal, repressive policies" of Musharraf: Italian journalist in new book

Balochistan violence dates back to "brutal, repressive policies" of Musharraf: Italian journalist in new book ANI |  Updated:  Nov 27, 2020 23:55 IST Rome [Italy], November 27 (ANI): The  violence  in  Balochistan  dates back to the "brutal, repressive policies and strategies" of former  Pakistan  president  Pervez Musharraf , says journalist  Francesco Marino  in her new book " Balochistan : Bruised, Battered and Bloodied". The book will be released on November 28. Its forward has been written by former  Pakistan  ambassador to the US, Hussian Haqqani. The book begins with an insurrection in  Balochistan  that began in 2006 after the murder of Nawab Mohammad Akbar Shahbaz Khan Bugti. "The killing of Bugti was a turning point in the shaping of regional dynamics, creating an irreparable fracture in relations between the Baloch people and the state. The flames of an independence movement had almost died out as a more restrained quest for autonomy took s

Sindh, Balochistan to facilitate SMEs

AMIN AHMED ISLAMABAD: The Sindh and Balochistan governments have pledged their support for the implementation of European Union-funded Growth for Rural Advancement and Sustainable Progress project aimed at increasing agricultural productivity in selected districts of the two provinces. At the two-day meeting of the GRASP Steering Committee which concluded on Friday, the provincial governments acknowledged the rapid response by the GRASP team on mitigating the effects of Covid-19 on small and medium enterprises in Sindh and Balochistan. The project being implemented by the Geneva-based International Trade Centre (ITC), GRASP will work to increase economic opportunity and contribute to sustainability of small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Additional Chief Secretary of Planning and Development Department of Balochistan, Abdul Rehman Buzdar and Chairman of Planning and Development Department of Sindh Muhammad Waseem chaired meetings for their respective provinces. They expressed their gra

New book speaks to the winners and losers of the Belt and Road Initiative

Belt and Road Through My Village listens to the perspectives of those most affected by BRI mega projects “The dam scares me,” says Nellie Delacarzada, whose homeland is threatened by the Kaliwa dam in the Phillipinnes (Image: Gigie Cruz) Tom Baxter November 26, 2020 “The residents of these villages have had their lives changed forever, some for the better, and others, for the worse,” writes Wade Dessart in the epilogue to Belt and Road Through My Village , recently published by a coalition of Asian NGOs. Through interviews of people living in the immediate vicinity of seven projects in five key Belt and Road countries, the book shows that infrastructure projects have multifaceted impacts at the local level, representing development for some but not for others. Such impacts are too often disregarded and under-represented in policy discussions of the Belt and Road, or in the Chinese media, which tends to portray a “harmonious” image. The more than a hundred interviews reveal impacts rang

Gwadar Port handles fish cargo as trial run: Dawood

0 ISLAMABAD : Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood on Wednesday said the first cargo to be trans-shipped to China had been successfully handled at the Gwadar Port by the Ministry of Commerce and Pakistan Customs. “It was a trial run handling 200 MT of fish catch in pursuance of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s directive to kick-start operations at the Gwadar Port,” the advisor said on his Twitter handle. In pursuance of PM’s directive to kick-start operations at the Gwadar Port, the Ministry of Commerce & Pakistan Customs have successfully handled the first fish cargo to be trans-shipped to China. This was a trial run handling 200 MT of fish catch. 1/2 — Abdul Razak Dawood (@razak_dawood)  November 25, 2020 He said that cargo which consisted of fish had been trans-shipped to China in eight reefer containers. “This will hopefully be the encouraging beginning of our trans-shipment policy and will increase Gwadar Port operations. I wish to appreciate