China has sought permission to start construction of industrial parks in Gwadar besides further development of the Gwadar Port, while the Balochistan government wants to supplement the development work by granting tenders for the construction of the East Expressway and a new international airport for the coastal city.
An official source said the agreements were likely to be signed during the upcoming visit of the Chinese president under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) agreement. China is expected to invest heavily in the proposed corridor which will act as a bridge for its Maritime Silk Route that envisages linking 3 billion population of Asia, Africa and Europe.
Both the countries have planned short- to long-term projects for the corridor under the early harvest programme. China plans to initiate development work at the Gwadar Port to enhance its capacity and construction of industrial parks, he said, adding that other projects related to energy, transport and infrastructure would be initiated in other areas of the country.
The government of Balochistan, he said, would tender for the construction of the East Expressway so that it is ready to develop business hub for the city. Chinese companies plan to launch commodity trade from the city and establishment of a commodity exchange is on the cards.
The government will also construct a new international airport at Gwadar to meet the future requirements of a bustling industrial city. The plan is to complete all this work within next two to three years, as by that time the government estimates the road linkage of Gwadar with Balochistan and Pakistan through under construction N-85 and M-8.
The source said both the federal and provincial government had unanimity that full benefit from the potential of the Gwadar Port should be utilised. Both the governments had decided that Gwadar would be on their development agenda for 2015 as it could bring a lot of foreign investment for the province as well as for the country.
The Balochistan government anticipates a sharp decline in militancy through the development work. It has sought permission from the federal government to allow import and export to Iran through Gwadar, Panjgur and Mand and from Noshki to Afghanistan. Allowing trade activity with the neighbouring countries would decline the power of insurgents to mislead the youth, the source added