ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: The Chairman Board of Investment (BoI) Dr Miftah Ismail has said that the federal government is planning to establish 46 Special Economic Zones (SEZs) along the mega project of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) route in the long run.
While addressing the concluding session of Pakistan China Industrial Cooperation dialogue in Islamabad on Thursday, he said that nine zones have already been declared prioritized during the 06th Joint Coordination Committee between Pakistan and China meeting held in December 2016.
Miftah expressed the commitment of the Pakistani government to nominate a working group to deliberate on how to build the zone. He said that either Chinese or Pakistani companies can build the zone or the same can be built jointly by both sides.
The Chairman BOI highlighted that products manufactured in these zones can not only to be exported but these can also be sold in the local Pakistani market, where they are not required to pay any customs duty. He said that this makes the zone ideal for investors as Pakistan has a big market of 200 million plus people.
Miftah Ismail said that the model can be primarily export oriented but in case of China import substitution also has a lot of potential, adding that the Government has already given its commitment to provide all utilities and security to the investors in these zones.
The Chairman Board of Investment pointed out that each zone has its special features for investors in terms of its location, raw material, skilled work force and linkages with other parts of the country and outside the country.
Miftah Ismail said that China has rich experience in developing zones particularly from 1985 to 1995 and from 2009 till 2015 and Pakistan can learn much from Chinese experience.