NLC takes over Thatta Special Economic Zone of CPEC

NLC

News Analysis |

The Dhabeji-Thatta special economic zone (SEZ) designated under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor will be operated by National Logistics Cell (NLC). A memorandum of understanding was signed between NLC and Sindh Board of Investment (SBI) to kick-start the establishment of administrative blocks and logistics with the CPEC based Dhabeji-Thatta proposed SEZ, reported a local publication.

As per an SBI press release, the MoU was signed by SBI Chairperson Ms Naheed Memon and NLC Director General Major General Mushtaq Ahmed Faisal on 15th May 2018. In accordance with this agreement, NLC and SBI will undertake work for the setting up of a Logistics Park as per the master plan and feasibility study of China-Pakistan SEZ Dhabeji conducted by the planning commission.

SBI will enable and provide help to NLC for its role as Logistics Park Management Organization in conjunction with foreign commercial entities and designated Chinese entities.

In Fata, the only SEZ will be Mohmand Marble City. ICT Model Industrial Zone will be established in Islamabad while an industrial park will be developed on Pakistan Steel Mills’ land in Port Qasim near Karachi.

While speaking on the occasion, Ms. Memon stated CPEC had paved the way for accelerated economic activity and logistics would play a key role in this respect.The NLC DG said that the SEZs have a major role to play in the industrial development of the country. The Dhabeji SEZ is spread over 1,000 acres and is located 55kms outside Karachi.

Read more: NLC signs MOU with German Giant Daimler AG for local production…

Pakistan is eventually set to embrace around 37 SEZs under CPEC. Four SEZ sites were identified in Punjab. Punjab-China Economic Zone and Quaid-i-Azam Apparel Park SEZ are in Sheikhupura while M-3 Industrial City and Value Addition City are in Faisalabad.

In Balochistan, nine places were identified for SEZs: Bostan Industrial Zone, Dasht Industrial Zone, Turbat Industrial Zone, Industrial Zone at the Junction of Qilla Saifullah, Zhoband Loralai, Gwadar Industrial Estate, Lasbela Industrial Estate, Dera Murad Jamali Industrial and Trading Estate and Winder Industrial and Trading Estate.

In Sindh, four sites were identified for SEZs. These are China Special Economic Zone at Dhabeji in Thatta, China Industrial Zone near Karachi, Textile City and Marble City. Two of these projects were considered in Thatta: China Special Economic Zone, Dhabeji (priority) and Keti Bandar.

In accordance with this agreement, NLC and SBI will undertake work for the setting up of a Logistics Park as per the master plan and feasibility study of China-Pakistan SEZ Dhabeji conducted by the planning commission. 

The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government requested the establishment of SEZs in 17 places under the CPEC. These include economic zone at Karak, Nowshera, Bannu, Jalozai, Rashakai, Risalpur, Chitral, Buner, Swat, Batagram, Jahangir, Mansehra and Gadoon Amazai. Others include Hattar Phase VII Industrial Zone, Ghazi Economic Zone and Gomal Economic Zone in Dera Ismail Khan.

Read more: CPEC: A Paucity of Planning by Pakistan

Moqpondass SEZ will be established in Gilgit-Baltistan. In Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Bhimber Industrial Zone will be the priority project while Muzaffarabad SEZ will be the alternative. In Fata, the only SEZ will be Mohmand Marble City. ICT Model Industrial Zone will be established in Islamabad while an industrial park will be developed on Pakistan Steel Mills’ land in Port Qasim near Karachi.

Earlier this month, National Logistics Cell (NLC) also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with German giant, Daimler AG, for local production of world renowned Mercedes‐Benz trucks by NLC in Pakistan, GVS reported.

The MOU was signed on behalf of NLC by Major General Mushtaq Faisal, DG NLC, and Mr Zia Ahmed, CEO Pak NLC Motors, and on behalf of Mercedes‐Benz Special Trucks by Mr. Klaus Fischinger, Head of Executive Committee, and Dr Ralf Forcher, Head of Sales at Woerth, Germany. Also present at the signing were Mr Naseem Shaikh, Director and General Manager, Shahnawaz Ltd. and Mr Ahmed Naeem of Shahnawaz Ltd, the Authorized Distributor of Daimler AG in Pakistan, who have been instrumental and played a key role in bringing together the two partners for this project of national importance.

Local assembly of Mercedes‐Benz trucks by NLC will mark a major shift in the domestic logistics and transportation industry towards European manufacturers who offer technologically advanced products that combine superior performance, environment friendliness, reliability and road safety.

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