PESHAWAR  -  The government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has decided to take concrete steps to revive the economy, pave way for huge investment, set up strong industrial base and promote tourism and trade activities in the province under a comprehensive plan.

For this purpose, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Investment Board is being revitalised and given more powers and approving generous incentive to the investors besides creating congenial atmosphere for industrialisation.

Similarly, a survey has been initiated for setting up new industrial Estates near Big cities, including Peshawar, Nowshera, Charsadda, Mardan, Kohat, Malakand and suitable places on both sides of motorway. In this regard a high level meeting of KPK Investment Board was held in Peshawar under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Pervez Khattak wherein the progress made so far was reviewed and necessary decisions were taken.

The meeting was attended by Mohsin Aziz, Vice Chairman of Investment Board, Senior Minister Irrigation Sikandar Sherpao, Rafaqat Ullah Babar Economic Advisor to Chief Minister, Chief Secretary Arbab Shehzad, Additional Chief Secretary and Administrative Secretaries of Finance, Energy and Power, Local government, Sports and Tourism and Irrigation.

It is pertinent to mention here that the KPK Investment Board was constituted one year back but remained inactive. But Pervez Khattak soon after PTI govt coming into power, reconstituted and streamlined it with induction of the senior industrialist Mohsin Aziz as vice chairman giving him the task of making the province attractive for investment and industrialisation.

The chief minister was told that private sector has offered setting up of gas-run power houses with electricity generation capacity of 200-250 MW at Kohat and Nowshera or any suitable sites in wake of the sufficient availability of natural gas in the province.  However, he hinted at giving guarantee of providing 70-80 MMCFD gas to such powerhouses while this cheap electricity would easily cater the needs of factories of the nearby industrial estates.

Similarly offer of establishing power plant from waste to energy has also been made to the KPK govt by the private sector on pattern of Lahore Municipality. The chief minister on this directed for joint meeting of the concerned investors and administrative secretaries soon after Eid-Ul-Azha to give such entrepreneurs practical shape.

He also asked the concerned departments to extend full support to the private sector to identify the lands and providing necessary facilities to proper respond offers of forming hotel/restaurant resorts consisting huts within specific distances and spreading at 150-200 Kanals each, Establishing Theme/ Adventure Parks for children and youth, reviving  skiing resort at Malam Jabba Swat, historical picnic park Bata Kundi Mansehra.

He said that promoting tourism in the province was the need of the hour so that the scenic and tourist spots of the province could be made more diversified and attractive for the local and foreign tourists.

Mohsin Aziz underlined the need of lifting ban on new connections to Industrial units, providing more incentives for oil and gas exploration, early preparation of the feasibility of the circular train from Chamkani to Karkhano Market and adopting easy modus operandi for privatization or leasing out of the PTDC motels and other rest houses in the province.

He said that the provincial government must create favourable atmosphere to the extent that the investors were motivated for maximum investment over here and the province could speedily march ahead on road to development in tourism, industrialization, trade and commerce activities.

He said that establishment of hotel resorts in Galyat would encourage the private sector to promote other tourstic activities including chair lifts, horse riding, cycling, ball rolling, walking tracks etc.

He said that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was continuously becoming centre of interest for the investors and the tourists all over the world due to its strategic location in Asia. The chief minister while agreeing with this view point assured that provincial govt would never spare any efforts in providing required guarantees to the investors as well as providing them all necessary incentives under full fledge cover.