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Rediff.com  » News » Pakistan hands operation of GwadarPort to Chinese firm

Pakistan hands operation of GwadarPort to Chinese firm

February 19, 2013 11:53 IST

Pakistan and China have signed an agreement in Islamabad to hand over the GwadarPort to a Chinese company.

Under the agreement the Chinese company will fully assume the responsibility of GwadarPort.

According to News International, the port will remain the property of Pakistan and the Chinese company will share the profit from it.

In this regard, a signing ceremony was held at the presidency which was witnessed by President Asif Ali Zardari, Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Liu Jian, Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar, some federal ministers, members of parliament and senior government officials.

Presidential spokesperson Farhatullah Babar apprised the media that the ceremony had actually marked the transfer of concession agreement from the Port of Singapore Authority to the China Overseas Port Holding Company, the report said.

The agreement was termed by the president as an auspicious development in the Pak-China relations as well as for the people of Pakistan, particularly Balochistan, opening for them ‘new opportunities’.

He said that Gwadar will soon be a hub of trade and commerce in the region, adding that ‘it holds the key to bringing together the countries of Central Asia and lending new impetus to Pakistan-China relations’.

According to the report, he also highlighted the strategic significance of the port for China and CentralAsianRepublics and its potential of integrating the economies of the countries in the region.

About the project’s strategic importance for China, he said that nearly 60 percent of China’s crude oil was imported from the Gulf countries, which would increase in the next decade.

In his speech on the occasion‚ Ambassador of China Liu Jian said the transfer of Gwadar Port to China will bring tangible benefits to the two countries and contribute to peace‚ stability and development of the region, the report added.

Source: ANI