Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan (1st L) unveils project plates during a groundbreaking ceremony of several projects in Gwadar, Pakistan, July 5, 2021. /Xinhua
It is unequivocally a commonly held notion that Gwadar is all set to become the next big trading hub not only for Pakistan but also for all Asian countries. The major infrastructure developments in the city along with its strategic location have attracted a lot of investment in the past few years and the government’s efforts to encourage local and foreign investment here have been remarkable.
In July 2021, the recent visit of Prime minister Imran Khan to Gwadar was marked by the groundbreaking of phase two of the 2,200 acres Gwadar Free Zone (GFZ) and the launch of various other mega projects, including an agricultural, industrial park, expo center, and three other factories.
- Gwadar Fertiliser Plant
- Gwadar Animal Vaccine Plant
- Henan Agricultural Industrial Park
- Hengmei Lubricant Plant
- Gwadar Free Zone Phase Two
- Gwadar Expo Centre
- Implementation agreement of 1.2 million gallons per day desalination plant
- Solar generators grant from China for South Balochistan
During that single-day visit, the premier also inaugurated phase one of the Gwadar free zone. In addition, the premier reviewed the progress of ongoing developmental projects and witnessed the signing of several memorandums of understanding (MoUs) aimed at constructing state-of-the-art airports, hospitals, and vocational institutes in Gwadar. Moreover, the accord presented a detailed overview of the progress of South Balochistan that was in line with the state’s efforts for focusing on the province.
On this auspicious occasion, agreements were also signed by the premier for the solarization of the area and the installation of a 1.2 million gallon per day desalination plant for the provision of basic facilities like heath, electricity, and water.
During the address, PM Imran said he was mulling over having a talk with Baloch insurgents as the time is changing and Pakistan is moving towards a better future. He stated that his sole aim was not only to win elections but also to develop Balochistan after the election.
“Gwadar is becoming a hub of activity for Pakistan, and it will benefit the whole country.” He further said that he had come to Gwadar for two reasons: inaugurating the GFZ phase two and the development of Balochistan.
The premier also stated that the Gwadar International Airport would elevate regional trade and uplift economic activity. “The projects were growing at a slow-paced rate before, but now they are progressing at a much better pace” he further stated that the work on energy and water supplies was also underway, and that will amplify Gwadar’s growth.
While highlighting the importance of expediting CPEC, the premier said that Chinese exporters were zeroing in to install industries in Gwadar that would level up its export.
CPEC Authority Chairman Asim Saleem Bajwa, while addressing the event in Gwadar, thanked PM Imran Khan for taking a personal interest in CPEC and closely monitoring its development. The CPEC authority chairman also announced that the vocational institute was under development and people would soon benefit from it.