On Thursday, during a high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan the National Development Council (NDC) has made important decisions for the ongoing development projects.
The meeting was attended by the Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa, chief ministers of Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), Special Assistant on Information Firdous Ashiq Awan, commerce adviser, Commander Southern Command and others.
The progress of ongoing development projects were reviewed by the participants including Gwadar master plan and establishment of the CPEC [China-Pakistan Economic Corridor] Authority besides matters related to KP-Federal Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) merger and development plan for the fiscal year of 2019-20.
Council members were briefed on improvements to security arrangements in Balochistan province, border management and the establishment of a state decree.
The briefing pointed out that Balochistan had been left destitute after the negligence of previous governments due to the waste of a development budget of up to 45%, security problems and misuse of resources.
It has been decided to expedite development working in various projects initiated in Balochistan and effective steps to be taken for reducing backwardness and hike in budgetary allocations for the next nine years, said the declaration released after the conclusion of the meeting.
The government will make concrete steps to raise income of Balochistan after reducing its deficit by bettering communication system and infrastructure. It was decided to immediately complete M-8 Motorway project, Basima-Khuzdar Road, 124-kilometre Awaran-Bela Road and 819-kilometre-long Chaman-Quetta-Karachi motorway.
On development of coastal areas of the province, the council gave approval in principal after undertaking feasibility studies for port at Gaddani and establishment of Special Economic Zone at Hub.
The forum also approved constitution of National Coastal Development Authority for development of tourist resorts and promoting tourism along the coastal areas of the province including Jiwani, Gawadar, Pasni, Makola, Ormara, Kund Malir, Hingol Park and Miani Hor.
NDC members were informed that Baluchistan province would be divided into four zones (Chagai Zone, Quetta-Duki, Khuzdar-Lasbella and Coastal Zone) and that an appropriate model would be put in place to encourage private investment in the large-scale mining for the development of mines and mineral resources.
The meeting was also briefed about various plans for improvement of agriculture and water-management in the province.
The forum reiterated the federal government’s commitment to ensure the availability of allocated funds, ad hoc releases and special dispensation for procurement of specialized execution agencies including National Engineering Services Pakistan (NESPAK), Frontier Works Organization (FWO), National Highway Authority (NHA) and facilitation for screened non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to operate within merged tribal areas for smooth and uninterrupted development.
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