[photopress:zone_Gwadar_1.jpg,full,alignright]Pakistan and China are about to conclude three important agreements for promotion of investment, trade, road and rail links.
The first agreement relates to laying railway line from Gwadar port oil city to China. The second is to double the Karakuram Highway to enhance the land link of Gwadar Port with China. The third is to put aside 50 square kilometers for the building of a duty free zone.
Gwadar is located on the southwestern coast of Pakistan, close to the Strait of Hormuz on the Persian Gulf. More than 13 million bbl/d of oil pass through the Strait.
It is strategically located between three increasingly important regions: the oil-rich Middle East, heavily populated South Asia and the economically emerging and resource-laden region of Central Asia.
Note, however, in 2007, the government of Pakistan handed over port operations to PSA Singapore for 25 years, and gave it the status of a Tax Free Port for the following 40 years. This makes total Chinese cooperation possible but complicated
During the forthcoming visit of the Pakistan caretaker prime minister Mohammedmian Soomro to China reports suggest there will be agreement on the the setting up of special economic Zones (SEZ) at Gwadar Port. The Chinese ministry has estimated that this zone can attract Chinese investment of around $13 billion.
The Balochistan government has been asked to identify state land for development of projects at Gwadar out of which 50 square kilometers land will be allocated to Chinese developers for setting up the special economic zone.
Source: Pakistan Daily Times