The Port’s Chinese operators have vowed to make the city the biggest contributor to Pakistan’s national economic output, with the estimate of 47,000 jobs being created for locals with new investments worth billions of dollars

Chairman Zhang Baozhong of China Overseas Port Holding Company Gwadar disclosed his plans after the government approved the 23-year income tax holiday and exemptions of sales tax and customs duties for the Gwadar Port and for businesses to be set up at Gwadar Free Zone.

“It [issuing of ordinance] is a turning point for Pakistan’s economy and now billions of dollars will be invested in Gwadar,” said the chairman to media.

The COPHC and its divisions are accountable to operating the seaport and taking care of its economic zones for a 23 year period. 

Concessions had been guaranteed in the Gwadar Port Concession Agreement but the governments had not notified them. However, President Dr Arif Alvihad declared two ordinances on Monday to set up China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Authority and Tax Laws Amendment Ordinance 2019.

According to the COPHC Chairman, Gwadar can become the largest contributor to the Gross Domestic Product growth in seven years. Currently, Karachi holds the place of being the single largest contributor to the national economic output.

“We have completed the master plan of the Gwadar Free Zone that will be built in four phases over a period of seven years,” said Baozhong. “Once the zone is fully developed in seven years, 47,000 jobs will be created for the locals, and its annual sales will be $1 billion.”

Bhaozhong lauded the PTI government for seriously honouring its promises and pursuing for economic development in Pakistan, especially Gwadar. He also showed gratitude to the military and media for their support to get the concessions notified.