PESHAWAR - Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan has directed the immediate publicity of Hattar Darband Special Economic Zone and Mohmand marble city stating that the present government is committed to attract investors into the province and generate revenue by promoting economic activity.

He further directed to involve investors and work out modalities on priority basis for transfer of land to Swat Industrial Zone which will help in internationalisation of the local industries including fisheries and garments.

These directives were issued by the chief minister while chairing a progress review meeting of the industries department.

He was informed that different investors have shown keen interest for conducting the feasibility study of Circular Railway Project connecting major cities of the province adding that MoUs for the feasibility study will be signed shortly.

While briefing the chief minister on the key achievements of the industries department during the past one year, secretary industries stated that the department has been successful in signing of joint venture and concession agreements of Rashakai SEZ in addition to establishment of 28 new industrial units in the existing industrial zones which have generated 2,450 new employments. KPEZDMC has also been successful in reviving 67 closed industrial units which have restored 490 employments.

The meeting was informed that during the previous financial year, KPEZDMC has been successful in conducting the feasibility study of Swat industrial zone and Buner marble study. The department has also completed the bifurcation of Mix-8 feeders resolving the tripping issues and adding an additional 5MW capacity for new connections in Gadoon industrial zone.

Additionally, the department has also completed the Installation of 11kv/3MW independent feeder at DI Khan, energization of grid station of Mohmand SEZ and energization of independent electric feeders to SIE Kohat.

Similarly, steps have also been taken for promoting ease of doing business under which online customer facilitation system for all industrial zones have been established and transparent and streamlined customer facilitation i.e. NOCs, transfers etc have been ensured.

As for the private sector employment, the department has been successful in creation of 1250 direct and indirect jobs in 25 industrial units, recruitment of 360 staff in TEVTA and engagement of 100 young technical graduates in NayaTel by the Board of Investment. For promotion of entrepreneurship, the Small Industries Development Board enrolled 36 female entrepreneurs in Women Business Development Centres for incubation and support have been provided to 280 small medium enterprises.

The chief minister was also informed regarding the steps taken by the department for generating skilled work force in the province. During the previous one year, SIDB has been successful in training 444 women in readymade garments and gems, training 30 youth in wood sector in Peshawar whereas 27,501 students have been imparted technical education and vocational training along with the launching of Chief Minister Free Technical Education programme.

Similar steps have also been taken by the BoIT for promoting private sector investment which include attracting Rs1,500 million investment in optic fiber facility by NayaTel, signing of MoU between PEDO and Korean Hydro and Nuclear Power Company for investment in 496 MW hydro power project at lower Spat Gah Kohistan and Mobilisation of private investment, by the SIDB, amounting to Rs500 million for establishment of new industries in small industrial estates.

The chief minister was also briefed in detail regarding the next five years plan of KPEZDMC which include operationalisation of Phase 1 and 2 of Rashakai SEZ, improvement, rehabilitation and modernization of existing industrial estates and economic zones and development and management of new economic and special economic zones in various regions of the province.

Similarly, during the next five years, SIDB will work for the establishment of Small Arms Industrial Estate/common facility centre at Darra Adam Khel Kohat, rehabilitation of SIE Kohat, DI Khan and Khalabat, provision of electric feeders and gas at SIE Peshawar, Mardan, Bannu, Karak, Kohat, DI Khan and Charsadda and establishment of 15 SIEs at Swat, Peshawar-II, Mansehra-II, Swabi, Jehangira Nowshera, Mardan-IV, Lower Dir, Hassan Khel Peshawar, Khyber, Jandola, South Waziristan, Bakka Khel, Darazinda, Bhittani Lakki Marwat and Bajaur.

the chief minister appreciated the efforts undertaken by the industries department further directing that every department should hold regular press conferences for highlighting the key achievements so that public may be kept abreast regarding the development initiatives being taken for uplift of the province and welfare of general public.