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Tuesday, July 23, 2024  
17 Muharram 1446  

PM Shehbaz calls for minimising clearance time at Port Qasim, Karachi Port Trust

Stresses need for installing modern scanning machinery at two ports
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif presides over a meeting regarding Karachi Port Trust, Port Qasim Authority, and Pakistan National Shipping Cooperation in Karachi on July 07, 2024. PID
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif presides over a meeting regarding Karachi Port Trust, Port Qasim Authority, and Pakistan National Shipping Cooperation in Karachi on July 07, 2024. PID

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has stressed the need for minimising clearance times by installing modern equipment and machinery at the Port Qasim and Karachi Port Trust.

“Modern system in ports and further improvement in accessing them, Pakistan can earn billions of dollars in foreign exchange,” he said while presiding over a meeting regarding KPT, Port Qasim Authority, and Pakistan National Shipping Corporation on Sunday.

PM Shehbaz’s one-day visit to the port city comes after his trip to Tajikistan where he invited the Central Asian country to “avail the facilities of Pakistani seaports” for transit trade.

During the visit, the two sides expressed satisfaction over the “steadily expanding bilateral cooperation” in all areas of mutual interest.

Upon arrival at Faisal Base, Sindh Governor Kamran Khan Tessori welcomed the premier. He is also expected to meet with a business leaders’ delegation from the export and import sectors.

This is Prime Minister Sharif’s second visit to Karachi in less than four months. On April 24th, he visited the city for a day, paying respects at Mazar-e-Quaid and holding a meeting with the Sindh cabinet.

“Steps should be taken to reduce the customs clearance time by installing modern equipment and machinery at Port Qasim and Karachi Port,” he said and directed the relevant authorities to take special initiatives to tap the full potential of maritime trade and to spur the economic growth.

He also called for ensuring the installation of state-of-the-art scanning machinery at the ports besides taking steps on priority to fully benefit from the ports’ potential.

To ensure uninterrupted delivery of goods to and from the KPT, the prime minister directed the relevant authorities to keep open the Lyari Expressway for cargo traffic for 24 hours a day. “The Malir Expressway should be connected to the port to further improve the delivery of goods.”

PM Shehbaz directed the authorities to increase the capacity of supply of goods to and from KPT through the railway.

“Fees for LNG ships at Port Qasim should be reduced and fixed according to prevailing rates at the international level,” the prime minister said and added that a comprehensive action plan for the regulation of shipping lines should be prepared and presented on priority.

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He directed the Pakistan National Shipping Corporation to formulate and present a comprehensive plan to reduce its cost and make its operations effective.

PM Shehbaz said that he held meetings with Russian President Vladimir Putin and the leaders of the Central Asian countries during his recent visit to Kazakhstan.

Pakistan, he said offered the “most suitable sea trade route” for the Central Asian states.

Central Asian states have expressed deep interest in using Pakistan’s ports for trade, the prime minister said and added that Pakistan could earn foreign exchange reserves worth billions of dollars by introducing modern systems in the ports.

He stressed that the development of the existing ports in Karachi would increase exports from value addition industries.

He highlighted that the private sector’s development, ease of doing business, and facilitation of investors were among the government’s priorities.

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karachi

PM Shehbaz Sharif

Kamran Tessori