Chaman SEZ to help boost investment in mines and minerals sector

February 21, 2024

Ahmed Khan Malik

The Balochistan government is establishing a special economic zone (SEZ) at the Pakistan-Afghanistan border in Chaman to attract investment in the mines and minerals sector. Talking to WealthPK, Mansoor Durrani, Director General of Economic Zone in the Balochistan Industries Development, said the government had allotted a piece of land for the industrial zone and the development work would kick off soon. The provincial government is taking measures for the development and the results would appear in the near future, he said, adding that the establishment of industrial zones would help create employment opportunities for the locals. Balochistan is rich in mineral reserves due to which the provincial government has decided to develop this zone to serve investors and help empower the underprivileged locals economically, Shahid Baloch, Director of Balochistan Mines and Minerals Department, said while talking to WealthPK. He said the provincial resources would be utilized for the progress and prosperity of people under a proper planning, and the economic zone in Chaman was one of those steps. He said the SEZs were promoted mainly in the less developed countries as a strategy to industrialize and to accelerate the economic growth, and the Balochistan government’s decision to develop an SEZ in Chaman was a part of this global concept, as this area was remote and backward in terms of economic and social indicators.

He pointed out that the decision to develop the Chaman SEZ had been taken after long deliberations at the federal and provincial level. The Task Force of the Executive Committee of Pakistan Afghanistan Parliamentary Friendship Group (Pak-Afghan PFG) had also recommended it sometime ago, he added. The task force recommended expediting the establishment of SEZs and border markets as well as the implementation of joint border area management. The Executive Committee also deliberated on the livestock export to Afghanistan in detail and recommended that the country’s interest must take the top most priority, he said. Chaman’s advantageous location positions it to become a thriving urban centre. The extensive cross-border trade between Pakistan and Afghanistan promises a wealth of economic opportunities for the city. As a key border town, Chaman can become a central hub for imports and exports, attracting businesses and investors alike. The SEZ can act as a catalyst to channelize all these activities properly. Durrani said it was imperative to address the issue of individuals migrating to Quetta, neglecting opportunities in their own cities, and development of Chaman SEZ was part of this plan so as to keep the locals in their areas.

inpCredit: INP-WealthPk