Zafar stresses need to jump start neglected Maritime sector

Zafar stresses need to jump start neglected Maritime sector

KARACHI: Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi has stressed the need to give a jump start to the Maritime Sector of Pakistan by exploring the abundant untapped natural resources available in this particular sector which can only be done by joining hands with the business community, says a Press release.
“GDP growth can be doubled or even tripled by paying attention to and staying focused on the Maritime sector”, he added. Speaking at a meeting during his visit to the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI0) on Wednesday, the Naval Chief said Pakistan is blessed with abundant natural resources at its coastal belt but unfortunately, most of these resources remain unexplored and neglected which was the basic reason why he formulated three pillars of his Command Vision soon after assuming charge as Naval Chief, of which one pillar is to jump start the maritime sector.
Chairman Karachi Port Trust Rear Admiral Jamil Akhtar, Chairman Businessmen Group & Former President KCCI Siraj Kassam Teli, Vice Chairman BMG and Former President Anjum Nisar, President KCCI Muffasar Atta Malik, Senior Vice President Abdul Basit Abdul Razzak, Vice President Rehan Hanif, Former Presidents Mian Abrar, Iftikhar Ahmed Vohra, Younus Muhammad Bashir & Shamim Ahmed Firpo along with KCCI Managing Committee members were also present on the occasion.
Naval Chief further stated that Maritime Sector was currently being governed by nine Ministries which has to be reconsidered and the entire maritime sector should be brought under one Ministry in which those individuals should only be appointed who have the expertise, knowledge, experience and they fully understand the intricacies of this sector as not every
See # 1 Page 7KARACHI: Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi has stressed the need to give a jump start to the Maritime Sector of Pakistan by exploring the abundant untapped natural resources available in this particular sector which can only be done by joining hands with the business community, says a Press release.
“GDP growth can be doubled or even tripled by paying attention to and staying focused on the Maritime sector”, he added. Speaking at a meeting during his visit to the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI0) on Wednesday, the Naval Chief said Pakistan is blessed with abundant natural resources at its coastal belt but unfortunately, most of these resources remain unexplored and neglected which was the basic reason why he formulated three pillars of his Command Vision soon after assuming charge as Naval Chief, of which one pillar is to jump start the maritime sector.
Chairman Karachi Port Trust Rear Admiral Jamil Akhtar, Chairman Businessmen Group & Former President KCCI Siraj Kassam Teli, Vice Chairman BMG and Former President Anjum Nisar, President KCCI Muffasar Atta Malik, Senior Vice President Abdul Basit Abdul Razzak, Vice President Rehan Hanif, Former Presidents Mian Abrar, Iftikhar Ahmed Vohra, Younus Muhammad Bashir & Shamim Ahmed Firpo along with KCCI Managing Committee members were also present on the occasion.
Naval Chief further stated that Maritime Sector was currently being governed by nine Ministries which has to be reconsidered and the entire maritime sector should be brought under one Ministry in which those individuals should only be appointed who have the expertise, knowledge, experience and they fully understand the intricacies of this sector as not every
bureaucrat could fully understand the intricacies of this important sector. He said that although the Ministry of Ports & Shipping has been renamed as Ministry of Maritime Affairs, but this was not enough as lots of real reforms have to be introduced in this Ministry. “It is not going to be an easy task to implement reforms as the bureaucracy has been resisting them but we will try our best to get the reforms implemented”, he added.
Referring to lack of maritime education in Universities across Pakistan, he said that not a single university exists across the country where students could get education on maritime subjects. In this regard, Pakistan Navy is willing to introduce Center of Excellence on Oceans and Maritime Subjects at Bahria University and eventually create a Maritime University along with a Maritime Science & Technology Park.
He informed that Maritime Works Organization will also be established as the country lacks expertise on setting up coastal infrastructure, ports and harbors. “If we have to construct a jetty, we hire foreign experts as we don’t have the expertise available in Pakistan”, he said, adding that no expertise is available for Offshore Resources Exploitation hence, Maritime Works Organization will be a core organization which will be established under joint ventures but eventually it will become self-sufficient.
He further informed that the Prime Minister has given approval for setting up a shipyard at Gwadar with a capacity to construct 600,000 tons ship. More shipyards are needed in Karachi which will be created in collaboration with the private sector, he said and invited the business community to invest in shipyard business keeping in view the strategic location of Pakistan.
Speaking on the occasion, Chairman Businessmen Group & Former President KCCI Siraj Kassam Teli stated that it was for the very first time in the history of Karachi Chamber that a Naval Chief has visited this Chamber.
Congratulating the Naval Chief for taking the initiative, he hoped that Chief of Army Staff and Chief of Air Staff will also follow this trend as the actual fight for survival around the world has now shifted from battlefields to the Economic Front.
“Naval Chief’s presence at Karachi Chamber shows his strong commitment to maintain maximum interaction with the business and industrial community which would be beneficial for the entire country. Direct interaction of the business and industrial community with the Heads of the Armed Forces was a must to fill the gap. It is encouraging to see that the situation has been improving as the Army Chief and Corps Commander often hold interactions with Karachi Chamber which proves beneficial for the entire country and clears numerous misunderstandings. We must come forward and join hands to collectively devise strategies in the interest of the country”, he added. “Our objective is to build new and strong relations with Pakistan Navy which would certainly prove beneficial for the country”, Siraj Teli said and hoped that the visit of Naval Chief results in starting a new trend in which it becomes a routine of every Naval Chief to visit KCCI at least twice or thrice during his tenure and maintain strong interaction with the business and industrial community of Karachi.
He further informed the Naval Chief that the business and industrial community of Karachi has been playing the lead role in the economic development of Pakistan by contributing over 60 percent revenue to the national exchequer and 20 percent to GDP growth. “But, unfortunately, our contribution has not been acknowledged neither by the present government nor by previous governments. Politicians usually deny our contribution, continue to squeeze us and take away all the benefits from this city and when it comes to giving back something to this city, none of them even show the intent to work sincerely for this city”, he added.
He said that representatives of Karachi Chamber at Boards of Karachi Port Trust and Port Qasim Authority have been giving invaluable inputs and suggestions since many years on how to improve ports and other relevant operations which was really essential for the economic development of the country.
He said that Karachi Chamber has been dedicatedly serving the business and industrial community and has been vocally raising voice for NFC Awards, political uncertainty, law & order situation and other issues affecting Karachi city and its business and industrial community. Referring to the Pakistan Navy’s presentation given during the meeting which focused on highlighting the potential of maritime sector, Chairman BMG underscored the need to form a committee comprising at least three representatives of Karachi Chamber and the same number of representatives from Pakistan Navy in order to further explore and study the opportunities available in the maritime sector.
All the potential areas in maritime sector identified by Pakistan Navy should be thoroughly reviewed by the proposed Committee in order to see what can be done and how KCCI can assist in attracting potential businessmen and investors, besides facilitating joint ventures and collaborations in this particular sector, he said, adding that development work on many sectors including wind power is already underway and some projects have been established hence, the potential areas have to be reexamined by the proposed committee.