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ISLAMABAD: Chairman China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Authority Lieutenant General Asim Saleem Bajwa (retd) on Thursday said all out efforts were being made to speed up industrialisation under CPEC, a flagship project of the Belt and Road Initiative.

This he said while talking to a delegation of leading industrialists of Islamabad led by President ICCI Sardar Yasir Ilyas Khan. President Islamabad Industrial Association (IIA) Tariq Sadiq, Senior Vice President IIA Omais Khattak, Khalid Javed, Sheikh Amir Waheed, and Chief Coordinator IIA Malik Sohail Hussain were also present at the occasion.

He further stated that the promotion of industry was a key target for CPEC which was imperative for the economic development, revenue enhancement and job creation.

Asim Saleem Bajwa said private investors would be encouraged for joint ventures; however, the maximum focus would be on the industries that could support import substitution or boost exports.

He said the demand of industrial community of Islamabad would be considered and a new industrial estate would be established for them after studying their proposal in detail.

Earlier Kh Khalid Javed, a noted industrialist, apprised Asim Saleem Bajwa of the problems confronted by their community. He said there were no plots left in the Islamabad industrial area which was hampering expansion and new investments.

Therefore, he said, a new industrial estate should be established on CPEC route at Hakla D I Khan Motorway so that new industrial units could be established there as the land was already available there.

Tariq Sadiq said “we have identified site at Hakla D I Khan Motorway” while CDA and RDA were also in process of studying the proposals.

Asim Saleem Bajwa informed that CPEC Authority was already studying proposal regarding establishing Special Economic Zone in Islamabad and if found feasible, an industrial zone would be established to fulfil the demand of industrialists of Islamabad.

He informed that the government had allocated Rs87 billion in the upcoming budget for execution of CPEC projects and “we are expecting increased Chinese investments.”

Bajwa said China was also cooperating with Pakistan in the agriculture sector and supporting in cotton seed development while many Chinese investors were keen to invest in modern corporate farming.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021