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The PM stressed the timely completion of the project for a solution to the Karachi – Pakistan problem | Instant News


Published in November 26, 2020 10:17 p.m.

Imran Khan said the damage caused by rainwater in Karachi was caused by the construction of an illegal sewer.

ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) – Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday emphasized on a permanent solution to the Karachi problem and the timely completion of all projects in this regard.

He chaired a high-level meeting on the Karachi Transformation Plan, in Islamabad on Thursday.

The meeting informed that more than 100 projects were planned under the Karachi Transformation Plan to be completed at a cost of 1.117 trillion rupees. These projects have been divided into three stages in terms of completion.

On the occasion, Imran Khan said that the damage caused by rainwater in Karachi during the rainy season every year is caused by the illegal construction of waterways.

The prime minister clearly directed that alternative arrangements should be made in advance for the rightful Karachi residents before eliminating encroachment.

The meeting was attended by Federal Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed, Asad Umar, Faisal Wawda, Financial Advisor Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh and Army Chief of Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa.


There are no additional burdens on home loan borrowers


Earlier today, the current prime minister chaired the weekly meeting of the National Coordinating Committee for Housing, Construction and Development directed that no additional burden should be placed on those who intend to secure loans in easy installments for the construction of their homes under Naya Pakistan. Housing Scheme.

Imran Khan has directed to simplify the NOC procedure and approval process for the supply of new electrical connections.

The Prime Minister said at the moment, there is no shortage of electricity in the country and therefore, there is no reason to delay the provision of new connections.

He said the government aims to provide shelter for the community, therefore simple facilities and procedures must be ensured.

PM Imran explained that as current procedures pose difficulties for the construction sector, the lengthy approval process for utility connections must be simplified.

Describing a meeting on the Pakistan Quarters housing project, which is underway, in Karachi, the Secretary for Housing and Works said 600 apartments will be built under the project.

On this occasion, the Prime Minister was directed to provide facilities to Pakistani citizens abroad, who intend to invest in Pakistan.

From the meeting it was informed that an online mechanism was being formulated for the NOCs needed to obtain new gas connections.

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The construction project in Punjab, KP helped generate Rs1100 billion | Instant News


| Principal Secretary notifies PM of applications for approval of projects over 50 million square feet received. | Imran Khan says growth in construction activities to strengthen economy | The Ravi City project, Bundle Island has a positive impact on the economy

MAQBOOL MALIK

ISLAMABAD

Prime Minister Imran Khan was informed on Friday that the Punjab government and the KPK had received applications for approval of a construction project over 50 million square feet which would generate economic activity of around Rs 1100 billion.

During the weekly meeting of the National Coordinating Committee for Housing, Construction and Development, the chief secretary of Punjab said that from across the province, they had received applications for construction projects of more than 44 million square feet for which approval for 20 million square feet had been granted.

Special assistants to Prime Minister Malik Amin Aslam and Shahbaz Gill, advisers to Dr Ishrat Hussain, federal and provincial secretaries as well as senior officials attended the meeting, said the PM’s Office press release.

The Chief Secretary of Punjab said at the meeting that with the increase in construction activity, consumption of all related materials such as cement, brick and steel has also increased. After development in an area of ​​44 million square feet, economic activity worth Rs 1 trillion (Rs 1000 billion) would be generated, he added.

Likewise, Chief Secretary Khyber Pakhtunkhwa said they had received a request for a construction project over an area of ​​six million square feet which would generate economic activity of around Rs 100 billion.

The Prime Minister assessed that the acceleration of construction activities will improve the national economy in addition to providing jobs to the community.

He also directed the Punjab government to approve applications that were accepted without delay, following the prescribed rules. In addition, stressing awareness of the Pakistan Naya Housing Scheme, the prime minister instructed Pakistan Telecommunication and NEPRA to coordinate with the State Bank of Pakistan to resolve problems facing the construction industry.

State Bank Governor Raza Baqir said at the meeting that the bank fully facilitates the loan process for housing construction under the Pakistan Naya Housing Scheme. Additionally, dedicated desks have been set up at about half the bank branches in every district across the country. Bank Al Habib representatives informed at the meeting that so far they had approved a loan worth Rs 6 billion for the construction industry.

On this occasion, Prime Minister Imran Khan said that the growth in construction activities will strengthen the Pakistani economy and provide job opportunities for the community. The Prime Minister directed the Punjab government to approve construction applications under the applicable law as quickly as possible.

He also directed the Pakistan National Electric Power and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority to work with the State Bank of Pakistan to resolve issues related to the construction sector as early as possible. The Prime Minister emphasized public awareness of the Pakistan Naya Housing Scheme.

The coastline is suitable for urban construction

Prime Minister Imran Khan also said that Pakistan’s coastline is suitable for international standard urban development and tourism and has the capacity to create huge opportunities for foreign investment.

He chaired a meeting of the Pakistan Island Development Authority and Ravi Urban Development Authority working groups in Islamabad on Friday. The prime minister said the Ravi City Project would not only help reduce population pressure in big cities like Lahore, but also introduce a new dimension of urban planning.

He said major projects would have a positive impact on the country’s economy and the lives of the general public.

He said these projects would help develop local industries and create new jobs in the country.

The Prime Minister was briefed that Ravi City and the urban centers on the islands would be built according to the green city principle for the first time in Pakistan’s history.

Every possible facility for industry

Prime Minister Imran Khan said that providing every possible facility for the industry was one of the government’s top priorities for stabilizing the country’s economy. Speaking with Energy Division Minister Omar Ayub Khan in Islamabad on Friday, he expressed satisfaction with the attitude of the business community in welcoming the government’s decision to provide electricity at subsidized rates. The Minister of the Energy Division briefed the Prime Minister on matters relating to the industrial, energy and petroleum package. He said the government’s decision to provide electricity at subsidized rates had yielded positive results.

Pakistan’s commitment to Afghanistan peace

Earlier, Prime Minister Imran Khan said that his inaugural visit to Kabul on Thursday was “another step to convey Pakistan’s commitment to peace in Afghanistan.”

On Twitter, the prime minister said he never believed in a military solution, but had always believed that peace in Afghanistan would be achieved through political dialogue. “After Afghanistan, we have the biggest share in this peace because it will enable connectivity & trade, bring prosperity to the people of Afghanistan & Pakistan,” he added.

The prime minister said Pakistanis living in the tribal areas, which have suffered the ravages of the war in Afghanistan, would benefit from peace and trade.

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The Ravi City project, Bundle Island has a positive impact on the economy

Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday said major urban development projects in Ravi City, Lahore and the Bundle Island, Karachi would have a positive impact on the country’s economy and the lives of ordinary people.

The two mega projects apart from advancing local industry, will also help create jobs in the country, he added.

The prime minister expressed this view while chairing a meeting here of the working groups of the Pakistan Island Development Authority (PIDA) and the Ravi Urban Development Authority (RUDA).

He said Pakistan’s coastline was not only suitable for tourism and urban development by international standards, but also had the potential to create many investment opportunities.

The Prime Minister further said that the City of Ravi project, apart from reducing the pressure on the urban population of the large city of Lahore, will introduce a new dimension of urban planning in the country.

In the meeting attended by Sindh Governor Imran Ismail and Punjab Chief Secretary Jawad Rafiq Malik via video-link, the prime minister was briefed on the progress made so far on the two projects.

The prime minister was told that urban centers in Ravi City and Bundle Island would be built for the first time in the country’s history in line with green city principles.

Urban Development Authority chairman Ravi told the meeting that a survey of 1,8600 hectares for construction had been completed, which did not require the evacuation or dislocation of local residents.

He said the Ravi City project, apart from providing the public with international standard residential facilities, would prove to be a model in the region due to the availability of basic facilities such as sewers, underground water tanks, security and environmental protection.

It can be mentioned here that instead of taking out loans, the two projects are being developed on the basis of public-private partnerships that are in demand by international agencies and investors.

The head of the Pakistan Island Development Authority notified the prime minister of the interest being taken by various international companies in master planning and environmental studies of Island development.

The fruits of economic stabilization must reach the common man

Also, Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday, while expressing his satisfaction over the situation of economic stabilization in the country, stressed that the results of economic recovery should reach ordinary people as early as possible.

He said with the government’s strategy to tackle the COVID-19 situation that is being hailed at the international level, Pakistan’s economy is growing rapidly in the region, where their economic team and coordinated strategy deserve credit.

The prime minister expressed his views while chairing a meeting held here to review the country’s economic situation.

Federal Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar, Muhammad Hammad Azhar, Financial Advisor Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Advisor for Institutional Reform Dr Ishrat Hussain and Special Assistant to PM Dr Waqar Masood also attended.

The prime minister praised the economic team for their efforts on economic discipline and better debt management. He described the positive trends depicted in the country’s Large Scale Manufacturing (NGO) sector as a good sign for the economy.

The meeting also discussed in detail the possible impact of the second wave of the corona virus on the country’s economy and the protection of the poor segments of the community through the Kefalat Program.

The PM assigns the governor to oversee the disposal of Citizen Portal complaints in the province

Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday tasked provincial governors with reviewing complaint disposal mechanisms registered through the Pakistan Citizens Portal (PCP) associated with federal departments operating in their respective provinces.

The governors will conduct periodic performance evaluations of the PCP dashboards of Federal Government organizations and a senior level focal point will be nominated for regular liaison with the Prime Minister Delivery Unit (PMDU).

The decision was taken in consideration of the lack of collective performance reviews of Federal Government organizations functioning in the provinces.

PMDU is also directed to create an exclusive dashboard for the governor’s office and orient the focal person who is nominated.

Citizen Portal has emerged as the most trusted medium for complaint resolution by providing a forum and a voice for ordinary people to raise issues.

The registration of about three million people on the portal embodies public confidence in the system.

People have filed 2.7 million complaints with a resolution of 94% and a total of 617,000 complainants have provided satisfactory responses.

To receive and process public complaints, 8,913 PCP dashboards have been created for officials from all government organizations across the country. Apart from provincial departments, dashboards have also been created for officials of Federal Government organizations functioning in the provinces.

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Pakistan, Russia signed amended gas pipeline agreement | Instant News


Karachi-Kasur gas pipeline project: Pakistan, Russia sign an amended gas pipeline agreement

ISLAMABAD: In a major development, Pakistan and Russia’s three-day talks on a 1,122 km long high-pressure RLNG pipeline from Karachi (Port Qasim) to Kasur (Punjab) concluded with an Intergovernmental Treaty (IGA) amendment marking the pavement for a new era of strategic relations between both countries.

The two sides had previously signed an Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA) in 2015 when Russia would set up a project with 100 percent financing, but after the GIDC ruling by the Supreme Court, and the availability of liquidity with the Petroleum Division, the Inter-Government Agreement was amended and the Pipeline Project North South Gas (NSGPP) has been renamed as Pakistan Gas Flow Pipe Project (PSGPP) with a 26 percent equity stake from Russia. “Russia has not adopted to retain a 49 percent stake in the equity offered by Pakistan, but has decided to own 26 percent of the equity. That means Pakistan will have 74 percent equity in the project. The pipeline project will be supported by an agreement based on take and mode of payment. without guarantees of sovereignty, “one participant in the three-day talk told The News.

“The talks during November 16-18 saw a lot of upheaval and changed dramatically but with the skillful and meaningful roles of the Prime Minister’s Special Assistant for Petroleum Nadeem Babar and Ms Saira Najeeb, MD of the Inter State Gas Company, managed to secure an IGA amendment in the highest interest of the country. with Pakistan owning a majority stake of 74 percent in terms of equity in the project. ”

The 14-member Russian delegation, led by DL Kapnik, Special Representative of the Russian Ministry of Energy for Project Implementation participated in the talks. The Russian delegation also included representatives from their respective structures ETK and TMK as well as state-owned companies Federal State Unitary Enterprises (FSUE).

The two parties have also decided to create a Joint Venture Company (JVC) which consists of a board of directors with representatives from both parties. The company will be named Russia-Pakistan JVC which will operate the gas pipeline in Pakistan’s leading role.

The JVC company will hire a third party to carry out the FEED (Front End Engineering Design) for the project. After the FEED, it will be decided whether the pipes should be 48 inches in diameter or 56 inches in diameter with a capacity to carry gas of 1.6 to more than 2 bcfd.

Pakistani gas companies, Sui Northern and Sui Southern, will be tasked with laying the gas pipeline. However, Russia will provide Russian-made gas pipelines and compressors as well as other equipment and it has been clear that anything outside Russia will be bought by Pakistani companies themselves. More importantly, Pakistan will be attracted by Russian-made pipes and compressors but price and quality must match on the open market to make the project cost effective.

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Pakistan’s China CPEC project has a long way to go as Beijing postponed the ANI-project | Instant News


Peshawar [Pakistan], 17 November (ANI): The COVID-19 pandemic, ongoing political unrest and foreign debt limits have resulted in a slowdown in Chinese investment in Pakistan as Beijing has suspended projects that are part of the USD 62 billion China-Pakistan Economy. Corridor (CPEC).
Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, whose government has been criticized for being under military control, has also faced criticism at home for not prioritizing and accelerating China’s infrastructure investment, Asia Times reported.
In 2018, Khan had suspended several CPEC projects that were suspected of corruption by the previous government. However, two years later, several members of his cabinet were named in a major corruption scandal involving the country’s electricity sector. About a third of Pakistani power companies are involved in the China project under CPEC.
The 278-page investigative report, compiled by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) and presented to Khan in April, uncovers alleged irregularities of more than USD 1.8 billion in subsidies provided to 16 independent power producers (IPPs) including those owned by Khan’s. advisers to Razak Dawood and Nadeem Baber, said Asia Times.
SCEP has also been investigating the profits made by Chinese power companies.
The report revealed that Huang Shandong Ruyi Pakistan Ltd (HSR) and Port Qasim Electric Power Co Ltd (PQEPCL) together paid more than 483.6 billion rupees (USD 3 billion).
The Democratic Movement of Pakistan (PDM), an alliance of 11 opposition parties, has demanded the government led by Imran Khan to speed up Chinese-funded projects, particularly a road and rail modernization plan that has barely progressed in the past five months. .
The PDM is also demanding the removal of the chairman of the CPEC Authority, retired Lieutenant General Asim Saleem Bajwa, until he explains his and his family’s personal business assets in the US.
Recently, a local media outlet exposed several Bajwa offshore businesses, including more than 100 companies and franchises in the US, UAE and Canada where his family is involved.
In 2019, the Prime Minister announced regulations to form a CPEC Authority (CPECA) prior to his visit to China and appointed a former lieutenant general as its chairman. Previously, the Ministry of Planning and Development used to oversee the CPEC project.
A Planning Ministry source told Asia Times that CPECA was imposed on the government by China, which wants soldiers to be directly involved in the CPEC portfolio because Beijing is reportedly annoyed by Khan’s slow movement on a broader scheme.
The sources further said that the recent disclosures of Bajwa’s offshore assets had taken China by surprise because they wanted to work with the Pakistani military to prevent private corruption.
Following the revelations, Chinese President Xi Jinping’s scheduled visit to Pakistan in September was postponed citing COVID-19 as an official reason.
Asia Times has reported that the CPEC Authority Ordinance grants CPECA chair and staff immunity from all legal proceedings against them, therefore, protecting them from the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and the police to institutionalize cases.
“The issue of the legality of the CPECA, the immunity of the chairperson from due process and the controversy over the family business abroad around the old chairperson in power are giving a bad impression and must be resolved to improve the efficiency of CPECA,” Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed, a Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz leader and think tank chairman. tank Pak-China Institute told Asia Times.
He further said that PDM is concerned about the CPECA immunity clause.
Linking the postponement of the CPEC project to the coronavirus pandemic, he said, “In addition, the new Chinese Ambassador, Nong Rong, comes with a strong economic background which should be a driving force for CPEC.”
He further said that the PDM protests would not affect the progress of CPEC.
“Pressure is coming from Western and Western institutions – especially in Washington – on CPEC but Pakistan has shown a willingness, readiness and ability to withstand this pressure,” he added.
Because in recent weeks Chinese workers and engineers working in Balochistan and Sindh have been targeted and killed, the cost of providing round-the-clock security to Chinese nationals has increased the price of projects at a time when Pakistan’s economy is badly faltering, Asia Times said.
Meanwhile, Pakistan has asked for a 1 percent interest rate on Chinese loans for the ML-1 rail project. China, however, was reluctant to heed the request and instead used a “delay tactic” to pressure Islamabad to continue accepting high interest rates.
Khan and Bajwa are now reportedly planning to take the matter to Chinese President Xi Jinping, who they believe can dictate terms on loans from the Development Bank of China and the Export-Import Bank of China, in the hope that a deal can be reached on the railroad track, Asia Times. the word.
The CPEC Joint Coordinating Committee (JCC) review meeting, which is held monthly, is unlikely to complete the ML-1 project in the upcoming meeting even though Pakistan Railways Minister Shaikh Rasheed Ahmad stressed that the project is ready.
The Asia Times further reported that the Greater Peshawar Mass Transit Project, Swat Express Way Phase-II and Peshawar-DI Khan Motorway, all under CPEC, have also been postponed and are not on the agenda for the next JCC meeting.
Citing local media reports, Asia Times quoted Jeremy Garlick, assistant professor at the Jan Masaryk Center of International Studies at Prague University of Economics and Business, as saying that Beijing used the tactic of delay in ML-1 because it didn’t want to. to end up with a bad deal on his hands.
“Beijing doesn’t want to reject ML-1. It wants to appear committed in Pakistan, but at the same time it is aware of the risky environment for Chinese investment,” he added. (ANI)

Rejection: The views expressed in the above articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publisher. Unless otherwise noted, the author writes in his personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be considered to represent the ideas, attitudes or official policies of any institution or agency.


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Pakistan will placate the Belt and Road opposition with more projects | Instant News


KARACHI – To quell stiff opposition to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, or CPEC, key to Chinese President Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiative, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government launched a major development package for the country’s south-western Balochistan Province. .

Khan announced the package during a visit to Turbat, 160 km northeast of the port city of Gwadar, a major preparation point for the economic corridor. The Prime Minister’s Accelerated Development Package for South Balochistan, as it is called, consists of projects worth tens of billions of Pakistani rupees.

The package aims to create 120,000 jobs, build 1,100 km of roads, build 210 health units, expand Turbat International Airport and provide gas and electricity to 320,000 households in southern Balochistan.

This includes loans for 2,000 fishermen to buy boats and funds to build 16 dams to irrigate 60,700 hectares of land. The plan also includes building part of the M8 highway, a project already part of an ongoing $ 50 billion economic corridor project.

“China’s annual trade is $ 2 trillion and Gwadar will link Pakistan with this trade,” Khan said at a ceremony marking the start of the program in Turbat.

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The official aim of the package is to bring southern Balochistan on par with other Pakistanis in terms of development. However, insiders say another goal is to silence opposition to the economic corridor, which is strongest in the Makran division in South Balochistan.

In May 2019, the Pearl Continental Hotel, near the port of Gwadar, was attacked by Baloch separatists. Last month, a military convoy escorting Oil and Gas Development Co. employees. be targeted in the same area.

Malik Siraj Akbar, a South Asia analyst based in Washington, believes Makran has been the epicenter of the Baloch resistance to economic corridors and the Belt and Road in recent years. “It is important to deal with local people’s grievances and lead them to rally support for CPEC,” Akbar told Nikkei Asia.

Other experts are skeptical the development package will serve its purpose.

“I doubt that the announcement of a new aid package by the Pakistani government for the Makran division will end opposition attacks on Chinese interests,” said Jeremy Garlick, assistant professor of international relations at the University of Economics in Prague. He added that although some local residents were happy, the opposition groups which strongly oppose the building of Gwadar in China will not change their minds overnight based on the investment pledge, as they will see this package as an attempt to “buy into their agreement.”

There is also political opposition to the way the package was announced. “People in northern Balochistan will feel discriminated against because of that [the announcement of] a targeted development package in southern Balochistan, “said Aslam Bhootani, who represents the Balochistan coastal belt in the Pakistan National Assembly. He told Nikkei that the elected representatives were not appointed before finalizing the package south of Balochistan.

Bhootani argues that building a highway and expanding the airport under the package will do little to help people in the region, who lack water and the means to make a living. He suggested that the package should include a way to import electricity and gas into the Makran region from Iran, while applying for an exemption from US sanctions on Iran.

As Pakistan is still negotiating with the International Monetary Fund to proceed with the $ 6 billion Fund Extension Facility suspended in February, experts say it is a mystery where the government will find funding for the South Balochistan package. The facility was suspended after Pakistan failed to comply with IMF requests to raise electricity prices and impose additional taxes, fearing a public backlash.

Garlick is also skeptical. “It’s hard to see where a cash-strapped government will get that kind of money unless the funds come indirectly from China,” he told the Nikkei.

Akbar is more hopeful, saying the government often makes big promises about projects and then forgets about them. But according to him the South Balochistan project is different. “This project appears to be a priority for Islamabad to see if they can create a region in Balochistan that is modern, thriving and welcomes CPEC. The South Balochistan project has the support of Islamabad and it is a priority for the Pakistani government to eradicate the ongoing insurgency and clear up areas of violence separatists, “said Akbar.

He added, with that context, the packages might be disbursed sooner than previously promised.

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