Islamabad: After his party’s victory in the elections in Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government plans to open a Special Economic Zone in the region to facilitate the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).
Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan Ali Amin Gandapur has confirmed that the government is putting its efforts to set up a special economic zone in Gilgit-Baltistan.
Federal government had acquired land for setting up a special economic zone in Gilgit-Baltistan under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor project. Efforts are afoot to start development work on the special economic zone, he said.
Gandapur has been engaging with Gilgit-Baltistan ministers including wildlife and forests, excise and taxation, tourism, and health ministers and others for extensive efforts to fulfil a huge mandate, given by the people of Gilgit-Baltistan to the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf in the recent elections.’
Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) had bagged at least 22 out of 33 seats of the Gilgit-Baltistan Assembly.
Both federal and Gilgit-Baltistan governments would follow an all-inclusive strategy to achieve sustainable development in the area. More focus would be given to major sectors including education, tourism, health and hydel power, said Gandapur.
It would eventually lay the foundation of a prosperous Gilgit-Baltistan, he added.
Gandapur claimed that the federal government had allocated massive funds for the uplift of Gilgit-Baltistan as it would create massive job opportunities in the area and would help provide basic amenities to the people.
Collaborative strategy would transform Gilgit-Baltistan into an economic hub of the country, he said.
The move comes after Prime Minister Imran Khan announced forming Gilgit-Baltistan as the fifth province of Pakistan, a move that has irked India, which has said that no such decision can be taken as Gilgit-Baltistan is part of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).
However, Pakistan seems adamant to announce Gilgit-Baltistan as its province, a decision it maintains is being taken as per the desires and aspirations of the people of Gilgit-Baltistan.