By Shabbir Mir
Gilgit: The federal government has approved the establishment of two economic zones in Gilgit–Baltistan (G-B) as part of the multi-billion dollar China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. Lawmakers learnt this at G-B Legislative Assembly’s session on Tuesday.
“Two zones will be set up in G-B and have been approved by the federal government,” Parliamentary Secretary for Law Aurangzeb Khan told the house which was being chaired by Speaker Fida Muhammad Nashad. G-B Chief Minister Hafeezur Rahman was unable to attend the session as he was unwell.
“The regional government has been asked to select the venues and this will be done soon,” said the lawmaker in an assuring tone. Politicians and other stakeholders have time and again questioned the federal government’s resolve to include the region in the project linking China to the Gwadar port.
PPP’s Imran Nadeem expressed reservations over Aurangzeb’s statement, saying the establishment of an official body was a prerequisite for such zones. “The body has not been formed yet; forget about other things,” he said. “Normally, it’s the responsibility of the provincial governments to arrange finances for the economic zones.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 4th, 2015.