ISLAMABAD: Gwadar is the gateway to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and we have to place it at high priority; therefore, no effort should be spared to resolve all the outstanding issues of clean water, electricity, infrastructure, and livelihoods faced by the people of Gwadar.
Member National Assembly (MNA) Sher Ali Arbab expressed these views, while chairing the 39th meeting (in-camera) of the Parliamentary Committee on CPEC at the Parliament House Thursday.
The chairman remarked that Gwadar is the gateway to the CPEC and undeniably important in entire rationale behind CPEC. "We have to place it at high priority therefore no effort should be spared in resolving all the outstanding issues of clean water, electricity, infrastructure and livelihoods faced by the people of Gwadar," he said.
The committee directed the concerned departments to expedite the process of payments to be disbursed among the victims of damaged houses and land acquisitions, so that people of Gwadar, who are already agitating for basic amenities of life, could be compensated. The committee also inquired about the progress on New Gwadar International Airport (NGIA).
The secretary, Aviation Division, assured the committee that the airport will be fully operational by September 2023. The chairman, Gwadar Port Authority, informed that all the efforts regarding completion of Pak-China Technical and Vocational Institute are on track and the project will be completed in December 2021.
The Gwadar Port Authority is also consulting with the NAVTTC, TEVTA, and Chinese to devise a broad curriculum for the institute. The committee remarked that while keeping present and future skills required in view, the curriculum for the institute should be devised in a way that there must not be any gap between the skills required and offered in the institute.
The committee remarked that $1 billion grant given by China for socio-economic development projects under the CPEC framework should be utilised effectively by including the projects having high social impacts and high visibility.
The committee directed the Ministry of Planning, Development and Special Initiatives to devise a comprehensive framework through which provinces may choose the projects which could bring value addition and meet true sense of socio-economic development.
The committee was briefed by the secretary Planning, Development and Special Initiatives, secretary Aviation Division, secretary Maritime Affairs, chairman Wapda, secretary Planning and Development KP, chairman Gwadar Port Authority, director general Gwadar Development Authority, and others concerned regarding Chashma Right Bank Canal (CRBC), DI Khan and compliance report on the recommendations of the Committee made in its previous meeting held on 20th March, 2021 at Gwadar.
At the outset of the meeting, the Committee took up the agenda on CRBC, DI Khan, which was deferred in yesterday's meeting. The WAPDA chairman apprised the committee that a feasibility study and the detailed engineering design of the project would be completed by March next year.
Committee Chairman Sher Ali Arbab said that the project is pivotal for the agriculture sector in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and decided that the committee will convene a special follow up meeting on the said project in February next year to ensure that the given timelines are met in letter and spirit.
The meeting was attended by Sadaqat Ali Khan Abbasi, MNA, Umar Aslam Khan, MNA, Mir Khan Muhammad Jamali, MNA, Nafeesa Inayatullah Khan Khattak, MNA, Ghous Bux Khan Mahar, MNA, Murtaza Javed Abbasi, MNA, Mehnaz Akber Aziz, MNA, Raza Rabbani Khar, MNA, Zahid Akram Durrani, MNA, Senator Muhammad Tahir Bizenjo, and Senator Khalida Ateeb.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021