Plans for Pakistan’s first ‘oil city’ in Gwadar to be ready by year-end
The purpose of the oil city's construction is to refine and process petroleum products, mainly imported from the Persian Gulf region, for regional and local consumption.
A masterplan for Pakistan’s largest oil city in Gwadar is underway and is expected to be ready before the end of the year.
The proposed mega oil city will be established on 88,000 acres of land in the Gwadar district, Balochistan.
The purpose of the oil city’s construction is to refine and process petroleum products, mainly imported from the Persian Gulf region, for regional and local consumption.
“The groundwork for the mega oil city, which will host a Saudi Aramco refinery & petrochemical complex, is in progress. We’ll take seven months to complete the masterplan,” said Shahzeb Khan Kakar, the Director-General of Gwadar Development Authority (GDA).
During the 2019 visit of Saudi Crown Prince and de facto ruler Mohammed bin Salman (MbS), Pakistan and Saudi Arabia signed seven investment deals worth $21 billion.
The deals covered mineral, energy, petrochemical, food, and agriculture projects and involved players such as Saudi Aramco, Acwa Power, and the Saudi Fund for Development (SFD).
The $10 billion Saudi Aramco Oil Refinery — with a 250,000-300,000 barrel per day capacity — is expected to be commissioned in about five to six years.
The project will have a $1 billion petrochemical complex that will lay the basis for Pakistan’s petrochemical industry by producing polypropylene and polyethylene.
“Though the federal authorities are directly dealing with the Saudis, we will invite them after the planning is completed,” Kakar said.
“The oil city is as equally big as Gwadar. We’ve made the masterplan of Gwadar as a smart city with an area of 88,000 acres, considering requirements up to 2050,” he added.
Apart from the oil city, the authorities are also developing an industrial zone expected to be completed by 2023 to attract significant investment in the area.
“Industrialization is forecast to start from 2023 with the provision of basic utilities, including electricity,” said Attaullah Jogezai, the Managing Director of the Gwadar Industrial Estate Development Authority (GIEDA).
Through the development projects backed by Chinese and Saudi investment, the GDA chief forecasts that the per capita income of Gwadar will increase to $15,000 by 2050.
“Fisheries, a shipyard, an oil refinery, petrochemical complexes, the tourism industry, and the operations of Gwadar port will all generate huge incomes and boost per capita income,” Kakar said.
“This can be achieved by providing protection, electricity, and a sound management system.”
Authorities developing a 5 million gallon per day desalination plant and a 300 MW coal-fired power plant say both projects will be operative by January 2023.
“Regulations have been formulated to allocate lands in the industrial zone,” remarked Manzoor Hussain, the Additional Secretary of Industries for Balochistan.
“Now land will be assigned only to those industrialists who will set them up within the given time frame,” he added.
“Our mission is to create employment throughout the province.”
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