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Punjab govt,Abu Dhabi Group sign two MoUs

May 14, 2005

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LAHORE, May 13: The Punjab government and Abu Dhabi Group of the UAE signed here on Friday two MoUs for the construction of Sheikh Zayed Trade Centre and Lake View Housing Project. The group would invest billions of rupees in the two mega projects to be completed in Lahore.

The MoUs were signed after a delegation called on Chief Minister Pervaiz Elahi under the leadership of UAE’s Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan.

The MoU on the housing project was signed by Sheikh Mabarak and housing secretary Akhlaq Tarar while the MoU on the trade centre by finance and taxation principal secretary Salman Siddique and Abu Dhabi Group’s Sheikh Saif bin Muhammad bin Batli Alhamid.

Earlier, the chief minister discussed matters of mutual interest with the delegation. Abu Dhabi Group chief executive Bashir Tahir was also present on the occasion.

The chief minister reportedly said a special cell would be set up in his secretariat where a representative of the UAE investors group would sit to streamline completion of the two mega projects.

Meanwhile, briefing reporters chief secretary Kamran Rasool and Mr Siddique said the housing project would be completed over 30,000 acres of land near Shahdara. The Abu Dhabi Group was expected to invest about Rs30 billion in the project. The Punjab government would provide land for it.

They said the project would be like another city. It would be a giant leap towards providing quality and economical residential facilities to the common man.

They said master plan of the project would be made afterwards, ensuring the provision of the best infrastructure and all other facilities there.

They said the trade centre would be built over 91-kanal land on Ferozepur Road at a cost of about a quarter billion dollars. The centre would have a five-star hotel and a huge banquet hall.

They said the provincial government and the UAE group have through an agreement formed a joint company under the name of Ta’awun for the completion of the trade centre project in three years.

They said the billions of rupees investment by the group for the trade centre would strengthen country’s economy and increase trade activity here. Mr Siddique said the government would also set up a sports city and an education city near Harbanspura with foreign assistance. All such projects were aimed at creating jobs for the people and giving a boost to the national economy, he said.