The Balochistan government has granted a tax-free zone status to Gwadar district, exempting the area from all provincial taxes in an attempt to boost economic activities.
The provincial government on Saturday also urged the Centre to grant similar economic status to the district to exempt it from all federal taxes.
The district will now be exempted from all provincial taxes including excise, services, and transfer of property, the provincial government said.
Senator Kauda Babar hailing from Gwadar welcomed the provincial cabinet's decision to grant special economic status to the district.
The provincial cabinet fulfilled the long-standing demand by giving Gwadar the status of tax-free zone, he added.
He also called upon the federal government to grant similar status to exempt the district from federal taxes.
Senator Babar said the tax-free status will make the Gwadar port operational and attract investment.
The similar status, he said, spurred development in the port cities of Dubai and Singapore.
The senator said the establishment of industries in Gwadar will provide employment to millions of people and earn foreign exchange for the country.
The deep seaport of Gwadar, a crucial component of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), has a special strategic significance as a facility not simply ensuring Pak-China connectivity but hyperlinking Central Asia, South Asia and the Middle East, making it a center of future economic activities.
The development under CPEC aims to transform Gwadar into a major trade and economic hub, facilitating regional connectivity and enhancing Pakistan’s maritime trade. The port’s potential to become an energy and transport corridor, coupled with its strategic location, makes it a focal point for international investment and economic cooperation, driving economic growth and regional integration.
The other ongoing projects in Gwadar include Gwadar Free Zone North (Phase 11), the Gwadar Safe City Project, three electricity projects, the Gwadar Smart Port City Master Plan, the Gwadar Tourism Project, New management model of Pak-China Technical and Vocational Institute (PCT & VI), State of Art Shipyard Project, Oil Refinery project, Green Gwadar Project, Pak-China Friendship Hospital, fisher community projects, Gwadar Port dredging project, Export-oriented projects, Fishing industry, Warehouse industry and Gwadar Huafa Exhibition and Trading Center.
— With additional input from APP
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