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Showing posts from May 1, 2021

Pakistan takes desperate measures to revive Belt and Road's port

Struggling Gwadar effectively chosen as regional subcapital and tourist destination Gwadar Port, the centerpiece of the Pakistan component of the Belt and Road Initiative, suffers from infrastructure gaps. (Source photos by AP) ADNAN AAMIR, Contributing writer April 13, 2021 16:54 JST ISLAMABAD -- Pakistan's federal and regional governments are taking a series of actions, including giving the status of regional subcapital and promoting tourism, to revive the struggling town of Gwadar, whose port -- built and operated by the Chinese -- hardly receives ship calls. Experts believe these actions will not work unless infrastructure gaps are addressed in Gwadar, which is the center stage of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the $50 billion Pakistan component of the Belt and Road Initiative. In the first days of April, a news item was published in several Pakistani newspapers quoting a Chinese media outlet, Gwadar Pro, as saying that Gwadar had been given the status of capital

Gwadar: A tourist destination with no French fries

FATIMA S ATTARWALA “We are packed for Eid,” said Muhammad Asif Muneer, managing director of the budget-friendly Gwadar Tourist Hotel. The pandemic may have sucked the life out of Karachiites’ entertainment, but it provided a boom for Gwadar’s tourism where the city dwellers are flocking to escape the confines of their homes. Estimating the weekly capacity of the motel strip across the scenic marine drive to be around 2,000, Mr Muneer guesses that Gwadar receives around 20,000-25,000 visitors a month during the peak season when all places to stay are accounted for. The well-heeled may opt for Pearl Continental Gwadar that has witnessed a 200 per cent increase in the number of guests in the last four to five months, according to its finance manager Waqar Baig. Other than the lockdown, the photos of the Gwadar Stadium by the International Cricket Council have also drummed up interest and made it a popular tourist spot, right up there with the Princess of Hope and the Sphinx. Budget-friend

Pakistan's NAB unveils corruption in Gwadar project

ANI |  Updated:  Apr 24, 2021 01:36 IST Islamabad [ Pakistan ], April 24 (ANI): While  Pakistan  Prime Minister Imran Khan-led government "plans" to make  Gwadar  the "next Dubai" under the  China - Pakistan  Economic Corridor (CPEC) initiative, the  National Accountability Bureau 's (NAB)  Balochistan  chapter has unveiled a total corruption of approximately 1.24 billion rupees in the  Gwadar  Water Desalination Project. According to The Express Tribune, the Water Desalination Project was initiated to provide clean water to the residents of the port city of  Gwadar . Pakistan 's anti-graft watchdog on Wednesday filed a reference in the Quetta accountability court against three former  Balochistan  Development Authority (BDA) chairmen for misuse of authority and corrupt practices in the installation of the water desalination plant. NAB had also filed a reference against 15 persons including 5 tehsildars for tampering with the revenue record and an illegal sa

China eyes on increasing military engagements in Africa through its Belt and Road Initiative

China eyes on increasing military engagements in Africa through its Belt and Road Initiative ANI |  Updated:  May 02, 2021 03:21 IST Washington [US], May 2 (ANI):  China 's military base in Djibouti isn't the only sign of Chinese security engagement in  Africa  but the investments through the Belt and Road Initiative ( BRI ) in  Africa  can also motivate both Beijing and host countries to increase  China 's military engagement on the continent. The safety and stability of the government and population of partnering  Africa n countries can play a role in the types of projects  China  looks to fund through this initiative, reported The Washington Post. Natalie Herbert, in an article in The Washington Post, said that  China  is looking to protect its economic investments and build its reputation as a world power through  BRI . Many  China - Africa  scholars and studies attribute Chinese interest in the  Africa n security environment to  China 's need to protect its economi

"Won't Be Bullied": Australia To China After Scrapping Belt And Road Deal

The federal government pulled the deal with Victoria state late Wednesday in a move justified by the defence minister as necessary to prevent Australia hosting a giant infrastructure scheme "used for propaganda". ADVERTISEMENT Agence France-Presse Updated : April 22, 2021 2:26 pm IST "This scheme is very focused on Australia's national interest," Australia's Foreign Minister had said. Beijing, China:  China on Thursday said Australia's sudden scrapping of a Belt and Road Initiative deal risked "serious harm" to relations and warned of retaliatory actions, but Canberra insisted it would not be bullied. The federal government pulled the deal with Victoria state late Wednesday in a move justified by the defence minister as necessary to prevent Australia hosting a giant infrastructure scheme "used for propaganda". Australia overruled the state's decision to join the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) -- the flagship of President Xi Jinpin

PM asks Balochistan governor to step down

Top Story Our Correspondent May 01, 2021 ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has written to Balochistan Governor Amanullah Khan Yasinzai to step down, as he wanted to appoint a new governor in the province.According to Geo News, the... Share Next Story >>> ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has written to Balochistan Governor Amanullah Khan Yasinzai to step down, as he wanted to appoint a new governor in the province. According to Geo News, the contents of a letter written by Prime Minister Imran Khan to the governor have come to light. Though, the prime minister called for governor’s resignation, he maintained that there is no negative impression on his performance. It reported that the prime minister will finalise the name of the new governor on Monday. Imran Khan wants to make Zahoor Agha the governor of Balochistan, while Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) has finalised the name of Senator Naseebullah Baazi for the post. According to sources, the PTI Balochistan lawmakers du

Balochistan Assembly forms committee over award of exploration blocks

SALEEM SHAHID QUETTA: The Balochistan Assembly on Friday set up a special technical committee to find out details of petroleum exploration blocks awarded to state-run oil and gas companies without taking the province into confidence. Balochistan National Party (BNP-Mengal) lawmaker Sana Baloch, while speaking on a call-attention notice in the provincial assembly on Friday, pointed out that the federal government had allocated six blocks to the companies for exploration of mineral resources in the provinces, including Balochistan, without taking the provinces into confidence, which was a violation of the Constitution. He said three big companies were given licences for exploration of oil and gas in Balochistan, adding that these companies would spend billions of rupees on exploration work while the province would get only $30,000 out of the huge investment. Slams Centre for not taking province into confidence while giving licences to firms Sana Baloch informed the house that one of the

CPEC to take center stage in Pakistan's development strategy: PM

Xinhua · china.org.cn |  May 1, 2021 Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan said that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is the testimony to time-tested and deep-rooted Pak-China friendship and it will continue to take pre-eminence in Pakistan's development strategy. Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan said that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is the testimony to time-tested and deep-rooted Pak-China friendship and it will continue to take pre-eminence in Pakistan's development strategy. Khan chaired a high-level meeting on Friday in attendance with the country's army chief, ministers of foreign affairs, energy, finance, industries, planning development and reform, chairmen of CPEC Authority, Board of Investment and other officials to review progress on CPEC. Addressing the meeting, Khan directed the relevant officials to prepare the country's youth to take up new job opportunities created by industrial development and high-quality agriculture farms to

Pakistan to seek debt restructuring of CPEC power projects

ANI |  Updated:  May 01, 2021 16:26 IST Islamabad  [ Pakistan ], May 1 (ANI):  Islamabad  is set to seek  debt restructuring  of USD 3 billion for the  China - Pakistan   Economic Corridor  ( CPEC ) energy projects and request  China  to consider restructuring of the repayments for 10 to 12 years in a bid to eliminate the need for increasing power tariff in the country. This is part of the Imran Khan government's proposals to minimize tariff increase requirements under a recently approved debt management plan, The Express Tribune reported. "The country is scheduled to make PKR 435 billion or nearly USD 3 billion principal repayments to 12 Chinese independent power producers in three years," Special Assistant to the PM on Power and Petroleum Tabish Gohar told The Express Tribune. "The government will request  China  to consider restructuring of the USD 3 billion repayments for 10 to 12 years, which in return will reduce the tariff increase requirements by PRK 1.50 per