A look at Special Economic Zones

Engineering Post Report

A number of Special Economic   Zones (SEZs) are being established under the overall umbrella of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) in different regions and areas of the country for promoting industrialization, establishment of major and minor industrial units in various sectors, inviting local and foreign investors particularly Chinese companies and investors, generation of large number of employment opportunities with preference to the locals and socio-economic development  as well as improving the living standards of the people in the backward areas.

For CPEC, the ongoing financial year 2022-23  is going  to be  the year of industrial cooperation, agriculture modernization, socio-economic  development and scientific collaboration  in addition to the on-going projects in infrastructure and energy sectors. Moreover, projects in the petroleum sector are also going to be undertaken in the years to  come for making Pakistan’s  carbon energy  supply more secure  through diversification.

In the industrial cooperation,  out of the nine prioritized Special Economic Zones, four economic zones namely,   Rashakai SEZ, Allama Iqbal Industrial Zone, Dhabeji SEZ in all four provinces  have also been placed  on the top priority litt.  Work on provision of utilities  such as  gas and electricity  is also going on speedily in a satisfactory manner for ensuring  sufficient supply of gas, electricity and other utilities for effective running of the SEZs. Power requirements for Rashakai, Allam Iqbal, Dhabeji  and  Bostan SEZs are respectively  210 MW, 375 MW, 250 MW and 50 MW whereas  gas requirements  are 30,40,30 and 10 MMCFD respectively.

Of these SEZs, Rashakai SEZ is going to be functional in March 2023, as the construction work of the first phase is advancing speedily towards completion stage .The Rashakai Special Economic Zone  is a flagship project under CPEC  jointly developed by Chinese and Pakistani companies.

According to the information available from CRBC Pakistan, The Chinese undertaker of the SEZ,  an important  part of Rashaki SEZ  Phase 1  construction was power transmission and transformation and that construction work  was going on in full swing. Construction of  a 132 KV grid station and 11Kv  transmission network is nearing completion. Rashakai SEZ is spread over an area of 10000 in Nowshera, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Motorway (M-1) , 60 miles from Peshawar and 90 miles from Islamabad. Rashakai SEZ has a unique strategic  advantage  to serve the consumer markets of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab,  South West China, Afghanistan and Central Asia.