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Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif (File Image)
Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif (File Image)

Pak PM Shehbaz Sharif blames Imran Khan-led PTI govt for delay in Gwadar breakwater project

ANI | Updated: Jul 07, 2022 23:36 IST

Islamabad [Pakistan], July 7 (ANI): Pakistani Prime minister Shehbaz Sharif ordered an inquiry into the "criminal delay" despite ample funds avaliable and blamed previous Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government for the slow pace in the Gwadar breakwater project, local media reported.
Taking to Twitter on Wednesday, Sharif said, "In a meeting today, I ordered inquiry into criminal delay in Gwadar breakwater project. It baffles mind how PTI govt ignored it despite availability of USD 445m grant, USD 484m soft loan and feasibility. From energy to infrastructure, every project under PTI suffered costly delays."
In a series of tweets on Wednesday, the Pakistani PM said that the "time for presentation is over" as it is the time for action. He further said that Gwadar is not only about the infrastructure development or the CPEC, but it also carries political, economic and strategic value.
"Turning Balochistan's backwardness into prosperity is our collective responsibility and my mission," Sharif said in a tweet.
These tweets came after the meeting to review different uplift projects in Balochistan, particularly Gwadar, a crown jewel of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project, reported Dawn.
During the meeting, the PM ordered the chairperson of the inspection commission to submit a comprehensive report within one week over the "criminal negligence" that resulted in delays in the construction of breakwaters at the port.
Earlier, the Express Tribune reported that till May, only 3 CPEC projects has been completed in Pakistan's Gwadar
The CPEC was launched as part of the bigger Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in 2015 with a value of USD 46 billion.
Till now, only three schemes have been completed by the CPEC authority, namely Gwadar Smart Port City Master Plan, Physical Infrastructure of Gwadar Port and the Free Zone Phase-1 and Pak-China Technical and Vocational Institute, The Express Tribune reported.
The Smart Port City Master plan is costing USD 4 million, the Physical Infrastructure of Gwadar Port and the Free Zone Phase-1 is worth USD 300 million while the PAK-China project has been built with a USD 10 million Chinese grant, according to a report sent by APEC Authority.
The CPEC Authority, which Planning Minister Ahsan Iqbal wants to wrap up, gave the status update report to the new government last month.
CPEC remained dormant during most of the time of the previous Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government but lately, there had been some progress after the last political regime brought in Khalid Mansoor as special assistant to the PM on CPEC affairs. Yet, he could not take these schemes across the finishing line, reported The Express Tribune.
The road-link project namely the USD 179 million Eastbay Expressway, which connects the port with the free zone and the city, is still under-implementation scheme, although on documents the project is 99 per cent completed. China has provided interest-free loans for the scheme. The CPEC Authority expects that the project will be completed by June.
Meanwhile, the water supply and distribution network project worth USD 72 million is still 65 per cent completed, which should have been readied by 2017. (ANI)