CPEC panel surrenders 20 acres Gwadar land occupied by Pak Navy

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Back in February 2021, the CPEC Committee had directed different ministries to get 72 acres of prime Gwadar land vacated…reports Asian Lite News

A cabinet committee on Pakistan’s CPEC project has surrendered 20 acres of prime land in the port city of Gwadar in favour of its Navy after they refused to vacate the land citing “security reasons”.

Besides this, the CPEC committee again told Pakistan Navy to vacate another 52 acres of land, said The Express Tribune newspaper report. It added that occupation was hampering work on Gwadar Port.

The land currently in possession of the Navy is part of the concessional agreement that country signed in November 2015 with China Overseas Port Holdings Company Limited (COPHCL). Earlier, the CPEC committee had not accepted Pakistan Navy’s plea, requesting permission to keep 20 acres of land.

Pakistan’s Planning Minister Asad Umar told The Express Tribune that “until the Chinese contractors agreed, the land could not be given to Pakistan Navy.”

Balochistan’s Gwadar Pic credits IANS

Back in February 2021, the CPEC Committee had directed different ministries to get 72 acres of prime Gwadar land vacated.

According to the Pakistani newspaper, the delay in getting the land vacated slowed down work on projects that were very critical for the full functioning of Gwadar Port.

In 2015, China announced an economic project in Pakistan worth USD 46 billion. With the CPEC, Beijing aims to expand its influence in Pakistan and across Central and South Asia in order to counter the influence of the United States and India.

The CPEC project would link Pakistan’s southern Gwadar port in Balochistan on the Arabian Sea to China’s western Xinjiang region.

Recently, Pakistan’s Senate Standing Committee sought the equal representation of all the provinces in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) authority and expressed concerns that there was a sense of “deprivation” among the provinces about the CPEC projects.

A meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Planning and Development, chaired by Saleem Mandviwala of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), expressed its concerns while discussing the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2020, The Express Tribune reported.

PPP Senator Sherry Rehman deplored the sense of “deprivation” among the provinces about the projects related to CPEC. Rehman stressed that coordination with the provinces on CPEC projects was crucial, the Pakistani newspaper reported.

It further reported that Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on CPEC Khalid Mansoor, while sharing details of the CPEC deals made with the Chinese companies, said that provinces were involved in Joint Working Groups (JWGs). Mansoor further said that the provinces were being provided equal facilities under the current framework.

Mandviwala stressed that the representatives of the provinces should also be included in the CPEC authority. “Why do you object to the due representation of provinces in the CPEC Authority?” he asked, according to The Express Tribune.

In 2015, China announced an economic project in Pakistan worth USD 46 billion. With the CPEC, Beijing aims to expand its influence in Pakistan and across Central and South Asia in order to counter the influence of the United States and India.

The CPEC project would link Pakistan’s southern Gwadar port in Balochistan on the Arabian Sea to China’s western Xinjiang region. (ANI)

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