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PESHAWAR: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan accused the former PML-N-led federal government of denying the province due share in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor-related projects and said his government would seek the inclusion of the province’s maximum projects in the corridor initiatives.

Addressing a meeting at the Chief Minister’s Secretariat here, he also said he would speak to members of the CPEC committee on the matter, while the relevant provincial department would seek an update on the CPEC projects.

The chief minister ordered speedy work on the Reshakai Economic Zone projects and said Chitral Shandur Road, Reshakai Special Economic Zone and Greater Peshawar Mass Transit Circular Railway project would be made part of the CPEC.

The meeting was attended by communication and works minister Akbar Ayub, planning and development, energy and power, and transport secretaries, Peshawar commissioner, principal secretary to the chief minister and relevant officials attended the meeting, said a statement issued here.

The relevant officials informed the chief minister about the CPEC-related projects, pace of work on them, and the issues concerned.

They said the province was deprived of its ‘genuine rights’ in the CPEC project and that the most suitable projects, which should have been included in the corridor project, were left out.

The chief minister directed the quarters concerned to redesign the marketable and attractive projects to be showcased before the Chinese government and investors. He said his government would work for rapid industrialisation.

“We will attract investors to set up industries, which will create jobs and widen the fiscal space of the province leading to the overall development of the people,” he said.

Mr Mahmood declared the Reshakai Special Economic Zone important and gave directions for the inclusion of several projects in the CPEC.

He asked the relevant departments to undertake a comprehensive feasibility in that respect. The meeting was also briefed about the Havelian-Thakot Expressway, Suki Kanari hydel power project and Hakla-DI Khan Motorway.

The chief minister ordered the prioritisation of projects promising dividends.

“Taking loans for projects will overburden the exchequer,” he said.

The chief minister said he would secure the province’s due share in the CPEC-related projects from the federal government. He ordered the removal of hurdles to development projects.

Published in Dawn, September 11th, 2018