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October 8, 2019

CM orders officials to finalise projects for CPEC


October 8, 2019

PESHAWAR: Chief Minister Mahmood Khan has directed all relevant departments to finalise work on the developmental projects to be included in China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) before the upcoming Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) meeting scheduled to be held next month.

He was chairing a meeting on preparations for the 9th JCC meeting, said an official handout.

Minister Finance Taimur Saleem Jhagra, Advisor to Chief Minister on Energy Himayatullah Khan, Chief Secretary Muhammad Saleem Khan, Additional Chief Secretary Shehzad Bangash and other officials attended the meeting.

The chief minister agreed on holding a roadshow in the province to attract foreign investment, especially in the tourism sector.

He directed all departments concerned to finalise preparations for the upcoming Joint Working Group (JWG) meetings to be held with the Chinese counterpart.

The chief minister believed that previously most of the projects from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were ignored in the CPEC due to unfavourable federal government.

He hoped that the upcoming visit by Prime Minister Imran Khan to China would prove to be a major game-changer for the province.

The chief minister directed the formation of a committee under the chairmanship of Finance Minister Taimur Saleem Jhagra for attracting foreign and local investment. The committee will include other officials.

The participants of the meeting were informed that several projects were ready for execution, adding the Chinese cooperation would not only benefit the province but also contribute tremendously to the promotion of trade and commerce in the region.

The projects to be discussed in the Joint Working Group to be held from next week include Rashakai Economic Zone, Hattar Economic Zone, Mohmand Economic Zone, Chakdara to Gilgit road via Chitral and Shandur, Greater Peshawar Circular Railway project, Chashma Right Bank lift Canal, KOTO Power project, Swat Expressway Phase-II, Peshawar to Dera Ismail Khan Motorway, Energy projects and many other are destined to change the future of the province.

The meeting was briefed in detail on the mega projects of the provincial government, their feasibility and progress.

The chief minister was informed that Chakdara to Gilgit road via Shandur and Chitral would not only promote tourism but also serve as an alternative CPEC route.

Furthermore, the Swat Expressway Phase-II, from Chakdara to Fatehpur includes 82 km highway which has an estimated Rs61 billion in costs.

Similarly, 320 km Peshawar to Dera Ismail Khan Motorway has an estimated cost of Rs230 billion.

The meeting was also apprised of 11 hydropower energy projects with power generating a capacity of over 2,000 megawatts which would help provide cheap electricity to the industrial zones, thereby attracting local and foreign investment.

The chief minister maintained that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was blessed with tremendous investment opportunities and has the potential to become a transit route for trade and commerce for the entire region.

He said that under the dynamic and sincere leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan the federation of Pakistan would be strengthened and all federating units would get their due rights.

He advised all the relevant departments to complete their homework before the JCC meeting and directed them to present a strong case for approval of the developmental projects in the upcoming JWG meetings.