Thursday, June 16, 2022

New Gwadar International Airport: Pakistan's 2nd Greenfield Class 4F Airport Nearing Completion

The architecture of the New Gwadar International Airport (NGIA) is inspired by a rising Phoenix. It is Pakistan's second greenfield airport built from scratch in a new location. With a 3,650-meter long runway, it is a Class 4F airport.  NGIA is scheduled to begin test flights in December this year.  The only other airport with a 3,600-meter long runway is the New Islamabad International Airport that opened for commercial flights in 2018. Karachi and Lahore international airports have runways lengths of 3,400 meters and 3,360 meters respectively, putting them in 4E class. All four of these major Pakistani airports can handle landing of Airbus A380, the largest commercial airliner in operation today. 

New Gwadar International Airport Architecture Inspired by A Rising Phoenix

New Gwadar International Airport (NGIA) is being built in Gwadar at a cost of $246 million on an area of 4,300 acres. Construction of NGIA started in October, 2019. The entire project is being built by the state-owned China Airport Construction Company funded by a Chinese government grant. It was originally scheduled for completion in 36 months. The work was slightly delayed due to the COVID19 pandemic. It is now expected to be ready for trial flights in December, 2022. 

New Gwadar International Airport, Gwadar, Pakistan

NGIA is part of the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects. Another key CPEC project recently completed in Gwadar is the 19-kilometer long six-lane East Bay Expressway. It was opened for traffic on June 3, 2022. East Bay Expressway connects to the Makran Coastal Highway which in turn is connected to the larger network of motorways and highways in the country as well as to China and the landlocked nations of Central Asia in CAREC

East Bay Expressway, Gwadar, Pakistan

The completion of New Gwadar International Airport and East Bay Expressway is an indication that the Western and Indian media headlines about the death of CPEC are not credible. To the contrary, the continuing progress on CPEC projects confirms the strong commitment of both the Chinese and the Pakistan government to move forward with their broad-based cooperation. Just yesterday, Pakistan's new Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif reaffirmed that his government is determined to complete all the projects under the multi-billion-dollar China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Earlier, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Zhao Lijian said China would continue to support its companies in investing and operating in Pakistan to realize win-win results and shared development. 

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Rashid A. said...

A beautiful airport.

The architecture is stunning.
I hope it is put to good use.

With Gawadar port, the Airport and highway network, it seems to be all coming together.

Hopefully Bharat, US, Arab rivals, Iran, and these opportunistic Taliban will not ruin it.

Riaz Haq said...

Rashid: "Hopefully Bharat, US, Arab rivals, Iran, and these opportunistic Taliban will not ruin it"

Pakistan has a lot of problems and many determined enemies. It is continuing to make progress, albeit relatively slowly, in spite of it.

Riaz Haq said...

China Ports Chair Zhang Baozhong: #China gave 5b Yuan (1 billion US$) in grants for #socioeconomic uplift of #Gwadar over the last 7 years to improve living standard of local population under Corporate Social Responsibility Initiatives. #CPEC #Pakistan

He pointed out that the grant is dedicated to New Gwadar International Airport (NGIA), East Bay Expressway, 300-bed China-Pakistan Friendship Hospital, China-Pakistan Vocational and Technical Training Institute, China-Pakistan Gwadar Faqeer Middle School, China-Pakistan Fraternity Emergency Center, and the 1.2 MGD desalination plant so far.
“NGIA will have the longest runway, 3.78 km, in the region, equipped with a capacity to handle the largest aircraft. The tourism sector will inevitably boom,” Mr. Zhang said. With its operationalization, new resorts will be established attracting many tourists from China and other countries, he added.
While speaking at length about the experiences of his 7 years’ stay in Gwadar, the COPHC chairman said: “We are cognizant of the fact that Gwadar deserves more rapid development to live up to the expectations of the local people. There is no denying the fact that it has developed much during the past 7 years.”
He stated three reasons for the promising prospects of Gwadar: the cooperation of the Gwadar people, its vast resources, and its strategic location. “The inhabitants of Gwadar deserve respect and development”, Mr. Zhang undercored.
Mr. Zhang made it clear that Gwadar port is fully functional. Some problems do exist like logistics and lack of market demand, however, development is an evolutionary process and Gwadar is on its way towards industrialization, he mentioned.
After the completion of M8, he said, cargos will be able to reach Lahore and other major cities, reducing the distance significantly. “4 new Chinese investors are coming to Gwadar to explore opportunities and investment potentials in the refinery, textile, petrochemical and agricultural sectors,” acclaimed the chairman.
COPHC is one of the major players in Gwadar and has undertaken remarkable steps in Gwadar’s development. “Gwadar is my second home and we are ready to collaborate with local community in educational development. We can offer exchange programs for the students and academics of Gwadar. Through the scientific research laboratory we will impart sophisticated know-how to the local youth”, Mr. Zhang pronounced. It has been observed that for the pursuit of a clean and green Gwadar, more than 50,000 plants were planted, predominantly spearheaded by COPHC.
Co-organized by the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) Islamabad, University of Gwadar, and COPHC, speakers included Commodore Jawad Akhtar, Advisor Maritime Affairs, Chairman COPHC Mr. Zhang Baozhong, Chairman Gwadar Port Authority Mr. Naseer Khan Kashani, Vice-chancellor University of Gwadar Prof. Abdul Razzaq Sabir, and Chairman IPS Mr. Khalid Rehman.
The conference was followed by a round-table discussion and a detailed question and answers session. Representatives of Gwadar civil society probed into the CSR initiatives undertaken by Chinese enterprises in Gwadar which were satisfactorily responded to by the authorities of COPHC.
Eventually, the media team visited China-Pakistan Vocational and Technical Training Institute and other sites under CSR to witness the pace of progress. They interacted with the local students to observe their views. The visitors were appreciative of the efforts of Chinese companies in overhauling the healthcare and education systems and in providing job opportunities to the locals of Gwadar.

Riaz Haq said...

More Chinese investment expected in Pakistan soon: Planning Minister

Iqbal remarked that work on water supply scheme in Gwadar will be completed by September this year while the 1.2 million gallon per day de-salination plant work will be completed by October to solve water issue in Gwadar.

He elaborated that 65 percent funding of the project will be made by the federal government while 35 percent will be borne by the provincial government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

He underlined that the new Gwadar International airport will also be completed by March next year.

Ahsan Iqbal said CDWP had also accorded approval to a project for provision of water to southern districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The Minister stated that Chaman-Quetta, and Karachi road N-25 dualization project had also been approved. He said roads infrastructure in Balochistan has been prioritized in the upcoming budget which was aimed at providing a well laid network of roads in the province to help provide people with better health, employment and education opportunities.


Speaking at a news conference here, he mentioned that during Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif's recent visit to Balochistan and his meeting with Chinese investors, the Chinese companies had shown interest in investments in Gwadar.

The minister reiterated that the government was according topmost priority to speeding up work on projects under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Briefing the journalists on different projects approved by Central Development Working Party (CDWP), he informed that a power project at Diamer Bhasha dam worth Pakistani Rs900 billion had also been approved.

Ram Singh said...

Looks like good airport. But is it a requirement right now, when the economic condition is so horrible?

Riaz Haq said...

RS: "Looks like good airport. But is it a requirement right now, when the economic condition is so horrible?"

Infrastructure projects like CPEC are long-term projects that add to the productive capacity of Pakistan's economy. Pakistan has to manage short-term issues without significantly delaying these projects. Never sacrifice long-term goals.

Ahmed said...

Ram Singh

How good India is performing economically ? Their are many articles available online written by Indian and non-Indian authors who show concern over job crisis and rampant poverty in different parts of India .

Ahmed said...

Ram Singh

Let me also add that infrastructure plays a vital role in the economic development of the country , if the country doesn’t have good and international standard airports and roads or highways , how can you expect the products or goods which arrive at the airport of the country to reach the market of the country on time if the condition of roads and highways are not good ? Pls note that markets of the country where goods are sold and bought are connected to airports through roads and highways . Similarly the products or goods which are produced within the country are exported to other countries through airports , how will these products which are being exported reach the airport ? Through roads and highways .

Riaz Haq said...

UAE to build Red Sea port in Sudan in $6 billion investment package

The United Arab Emirates will build a new Red Sea port in Sudan as part of a $6 billion investment package, DAL group chairman Osama Daoud Abdellatif, a partner in the deal, told Reuters.

Abdellatif said the package includes a free trade zone, a large agricultural project and an imminent $300 million deposit to Sudan's central bank, which would be the first such deposit since an October military takeover.


The UAE deal also includes the $1.6 billion expansion and development of an agricultural project by Abu Dhabi conglomerate IHC and DAL Agriculture in the town of Abu Hamad in northern Sudan, Abdellatif said.


Rumours of Gulf investments in Port Sudan, and in agricultural projects elsewhere in the country, have in the past stirred opposition and sometimes protests.


Alfalfa, wheat, cotton, sesame, and other crops would be grown and processed on the 400,000 acres of leased land, he said. A $450 million, 500 km (310 mile) toll road connecting the project to the port would be built as well, financed by the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development.

Under the agreement, the Fund would also make a deposit of $300 million to the Central Bank of Sudan, Abdellatif said.

Abdellatif said the agreement was reached initially in July 2021, under a civilian-led transitional government.

ZhongGuo PengYou said...

I would like to share Pakistani friends Chinese airlines are very eager to start operations in this beautiful airport. Like to travel with friends and family for tourism to this beautiful place.. Please start more food restaurant with Chinese cuisine..

ZhongBaYouYi WanSui WanSui..

Riaz Haq said...

A new runway at Faisalabad International Airport will be completed by October this year, enabling Boeing 777 aircraft to land, said Airport Manager Muhammad Anwar Zia.

Addressing Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FCCI) here on Thursday, he added that the air cargo complex was also under construction and 75% of the work was expected to be completed before the runway becomes operational.

Zia expressed satisfaction over the available passenger load and air cargo and said that 102 domestic and international flights were successfully operating from Faisalabad airport.

Zia expressed satisfaction over the available passenger load and air cargo and said that 102 domestic and international flights were successfully operating from Faisalabad airport.

He said the old runway could only accommodate small planes, which prompted authorities to construct a new runway for wide-bodied aircraft, in view of the projected increase of passengers and air cargo from the city and its catchment areas.


The new runway will be completed by October this year, enabling Boeing 777 to land at Faisalabad International Airport.

This was stated by airport manager Muhammad Anwar Zia at a meeting with FCCI officials on Thursday.

He said the air cargo complex was also under construction and 75 per cent of the work would be completed before the runway becomes operational.

He expressed satisfaction over the available passenger load and air cargo and said the airport was in a deficit of Rs220 million when he was posted here.

“It is now earning a profit of Rs2 billion,” he said and added that presently 102 domestic and international flights are operating from this airport facility in a month. He said that only small planes could land on the old runway, prompting authorities to construct a new runway.

He said a study was conducted to evaluate the passenger load before contacting international airlines. At that time the available passenger load was only 70,000 which jumped to 500,000 and is now expected to cross the mark of 800,000 within the next few years. He said that in a similar pattern, we must calculate the available tonnage of air cargo so that the airlines could be convinced to launch a dedicated air cargo service from this port.

He asked the FCCI to share data on air cargo so that a comprehensive study could be finalised. Four planes can be parked at a time and more facilities will also be arranged after calculating the passengers and air cargo shipments, he said.

Riaz Haq said...

PM tells top-ranking Chinese official: Govt to complete CPEC projects at earliest

In the latest development on economic front, China has announced to grant a fresh rollover of $2 billion safe deposits to Pakistan. Besides, it also decided to export 200,000 tonnes of urea fertiliser to Pakistan.

In this regard, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between Pakistan and China during the visit of high-level Chinese delegation to Pakistan. As per the understanding between the two countries, the Chinese government will provide Pakistan 3,000 sets of solar home system while Pakistan will export embryos to China for quarantine and health requirements for buffalo and Rhodes Grass to China.

In addition, an understanding on the terms of reference of G2G joint technical working group for realignment of Karakoram Highway from Thakot to Raikot was also developed. The high-level delegation, under the leadership of Yang Jiechi, Member of the Politburo of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and Director of its Foreign Affairs Commission, is on a two-day visit to Pakistan.

On arrival in the capital, SAPMs Syed Tariq Fatemi and Zafaruddin Mahmood, Ambassador Mumtaz Zahra Baloch, additional secretary and other officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, received the delegation.

Extending a warm welcome to Director Yang, the Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif conveyed the most cordial greetings and best wishes for President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang. He noted that Director Yang’s visit marked the continuation of high-level exchanges between Pakistan and China, which are the hallmark of the time-tested All-Weather Strategic Cooperative Partnership between the two countries.

The prime minister recalled his extensive conversation with Premier Li Keqiang in May 2022, during which both leaders had reviewed the entire spectrum of bilateral relations and exchanged views on the regional and international situation.

He underscored the significance of Director Yang’s visit for accelerating the implementation of the leaders’ consensus on further enhancing bilateral relations across all domains. “Economic cooperation has become a mainstay of the wide-ranging Pakistan-China partnership,” said the PM.

The prime minister thanked China for renewal of the RMB 15 billion (US $ 2.3 billion) syndicate facility and its support and assistance to Pakistan's efforts towards preventing the spread of Covid-19 pandemic by providing millions of vaccine doses as well as protective and medical equipment.

He underlined that as a flagship of the visionary Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), CPEC had transformed Pakistan’s economic base and strengthened capacity for self-development. Besides, PM Shehbaz reaffirmed the government’s resolve to accelerate the pace and complete CPEC projects at the earliest. He also underscored the high importance Pakistan attached to the strategic ML-I and other key projects including Karachi Circular Railway (KCR), Babusar Tunnel, and desalinisation plant in Karachi.

“Pakistan stands ready to work closely with China for realising both countries’ shared vision of connectivity, prosperity and public well-being,” said PM Shehbaz. He added Pakistan would also continue to support Chinese investors with competitive incentives, access to high-quality infrastructure and unwavering security arrangements.

CPEC and growing economic linkages had deepened the roots of the abiding friendship between the peoples of both countries, the Prime Minister noted. Atop this unshakeable foundation, the Pakistan-China partnership would continue to play its valuable role as a factor of peace and stability in the region and beyond.

Riaz Haq said...

New Gwadar International Airport to be Equipped with Advanced Communications System

The New Gwadar International Airport (NGIA) will be equipped with an advanced communications system from Chinese Company Hytera, a leading global provider of professional communications technologies and solutions.

The NGIA, built across an area of 4,300 acres, is expected to become the largest airport in Pakistan after its completion on 2023 and is one of the main projects under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

To ensure the safety of passengers and employees both on the ground and in the air, the Hytera airport communications solution was chosen to provide reliable and robust communication for the NGIA.

According to the contract, Hytera will deploy top-of-the-line equipment and communication system for the new Gwadar International Airport, including 1 DIB-R5 Compact Tetra Base Station, Smart One Dispatch System, and multiple portable radios, mobile radios as well as repeaters.

The project marked another milestone of Hytera’s progress in the airport industry and the Pakistani market. Its roster of clients in the airport industry includes Qatar Airways, PMIA Airport, Hong Kong Airport, Vienna Airport, Charles de Gaulle Airport, and Helsinki Airport.

Riaz Haq said...

Qatar Wealth Fund Plans $3 Billion Investment in Pakistan

QIA may invest in South Asian nation’s airports, hospitality

Pakistan is trying to shore up its finances to avoid a default

Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund plans to invest $3 billion in key sectors of Pakistan’s economy as the gas-rich Gulf state extends its support to the cash-strapped South Asian nation.
The $445 billion Qatar Investment Authority is evaluating strategic investments in the country’s main airports in Islamabad and Karachi, as well as in the renewable energy, power and hospitality sectors, according to people familiar with the matter.

The investments from the QIA may partly overlap with the $2 billion in bilateral support Qatar has already planned for Pakistan, one of the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. The fund may end up investing more or less than $3 billion depending on the asset valuations and opportunities, the people said, without sharing a time frame.

The Qatari ruler’s office confirmed the plan to invest in Pakistan in a statement posted on its website. The decision came during a meeting between ruler Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani and Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

Default Risk
Qatar is pledging its support for Pakistan to help ease the country’s funding crunch and the consequent risk of a default. Prime Minister Sharif has been visiting Qatar ahead of an IMF board meeting next week that could lead to the release of $1.2 billion in financing. Arab nations committed to supporting the country only after it secured a program from the Washington-based lender.

IMF Is Said to Seek Assurance on Saudi Funding to Pakistan

During the meeting, officials also discussed the progress Qatar -- the world’s top supplier of liquefied natural gas -- has made on investing in Pakistan’s next import terminal, according to people with knowledge of the discussions. While progress has been made, some steps remain, they said.

Shares in state-controlled Pakistan International Airlines rose as much as 10% following the news of Qatar’s interest in the hospitality sector. The carrier owns the Roosevelt Hotel in New York and has previously tried to sell the iconic property.

The South Asian nation will also get $1 billion in oil financing from Saudi Arabia and a similar amount in investments from the United Arab Emirates. Gulf states often provide a mix of deposits and investment pledges when they provide aid to states.

The Pakistan rupee is the best performer globally this month and has gained about 9% since dropping to a record low last month as worries over a possible default fade, according to data tracked by Bloomberg.

Riaz Haq said...

East Bay Expressway (EBEW), New Gwadar International Airport (NGIA), China-Pakistan Vocational and Technical Training Institute (PCVTI), China-Pakistan 300 Bed Friendship Hospital, 1.2 million Gallons per Day (MGD) desalination water plant, and a number of other infrastructural development projects are some of the China-funded schemes.

Many of these projects such as EBEW and PCVTI are functional. Others are expected to be completed soon. Since China’s takeover of Gwadar port in 2013, a number of direct and indirect benefits have been offered to the local community. Several job opportunities have been provided.

In addition to the infrastructure developments, Gwadar is witnessing multiple social welfare programs, such as Gwadar Women’s Development Centre, aimed at skills development, women empowerment, and poverty alleviation. Furthermore, the planned projects can eventually make the locals self-sufficient.

Moreover, China has so far installed over 7,000 solar panels in district Gwadar to provide efficient electricity to local users. Gwadar port is functional with a remarkable capacity to process containers, bulk cargo, and LPG vessels. Hundreds of thousands of cargo is processed annually.

Recently, a web-based custom (weboc) service has been instituted as well, which will accelerate the clearance process.

In Gwadar Free Zone, more than 50 companies, both from Pakistan and abroad, have been registered and are in the operational stage.

The areas of manufacturing/ processing range from agriculture to trading, food processing, chemical fertilizer, metal processing and agricultural production.

The Scientific Research Laboratory in Free Zone equipped with sophisticated technology is working selflessly on modern techniques to explore new varieties of plants favorable to Gwadar’s environment.

So far, they have cultivated several varieties of bananas. Cultivation of other plants such as figs and king-grass which are seemingly unfeasible has made it possible for the local farmers to prospect new avenues of livelihood.

Apart from managing commercial activities, China Overseas Ports Holding Company (COPHC), the concession-holder and operator of Gwadar Port and Free Zone, has undertaken a number of initiatives in the social sector, within the port premises and beyond.

The China-Pakistan High School for girls in Faqeer Colony, which is governed by COPHC, has proved to be a great achievement in the education sector. The Women Garments Factory and the goat farm in the Free Zone, in addition to skills enhancement, are a source of livelihood for the local workers.

Besides, Chinese enterprises working in Gwadar, under the framework of CSR, extend a helping hand to their local brothers. During the floods earlier this year, COPHC reached the families on the outskirts of Gwadar. Edible items to 1000 affected families were distributed.

Fishing nets were given to the local fishermen. Apart from social services, China has also striven to enhance the institutional efficiency of Gwadar.

Motorcycles and laptops have been given to Gwadar Police to increase their productivity. For the pursuit of clean and green Gwadar, China-Pakistan Friendship Forest was established where more than 50,000 plants have been planted. This has improved the natural environment of Gwadar.

This is not the end. Gwadar is yet to achieve its full potential. With the construction of the breakwater, completion of the port’s dredging process and operationalization of the international airport, Gwadar port will truly prove to be the engine of Pakistan’s economic development.

The industrialization of the Gwadar Free Zone will start a new era for Pakistan’s progress. With the commencement of manufacturing in the free zone, Pakistan will emerge as a production hub in South Asia.

Exports will increase, curtailing Pakistan’s current account deficit and increasing the foreign reserves.

Riaz Haq said...

Barrick Gold team keen to invest in Gwadar

A team of Barrick Gold Corporation, headed by Michael Peter Nelson, arrived in Gwadar on Tuesday and indicated that it was interested in making investment in import and export of different minerals in the port city.

The delegation, which flew to Gwadar in a special plane, attended an important meeting about Gwadar free zone, functionality, connectivity of the port and the future of Reko-Diq.

The team informed the meeting about their interest in investment in various sectors in Gwadar.

The chairman of Gwadar Port Authority (GPA), Mr Naseer Khan Kashani, briefed the delegation on Gwadar port, Gwadar free zone and other development projects initiated under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

The GPA chairman urged the foreign investors to take advantage of the ample development opportunities in the port city as the foreign investment was safe and secured here in every way and all necessary facilities were available in the area.

The team was further informed that Gwadar International Airport would be completed next year after which tourists and investors from all over the world would start flocking the port city.

Riaz Haq said...

Successful bidder announced to install floating jetty at Gwadar Fish Harbour

The Gwadar Port Authority (GPA) on Wednesday announced the successful bidder for the supply and installation of a floating jetty at Gwadar Port.

According to the details, GPA has invited companies and contractors who have sufficient experience in the relevant field and are suitably competent in the supply, installation, and commissioning of the floating jetty at Gwadar Mini Port in line with the prescribed tender documents.

The qualified tenderers put forward their technical and financial proposals separately in sealed envelopes with all the required details and documentary evidence on July 25, 2022.

In response to the proposals, three bidders have been chosen; however, Karachi-based RAB Construction Company has been described as the lowest evaluated bidder with Rs 150 million.

A floating jetty is made of one or more floats or pontoons. Regardless of the level of water, they are used to link boats.