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Pakistan & China are building an SEZ in PoK’s Gilgit-Baltistan, satellite images show

The Moqpondass SEZ in Gilgit is part of the CPEC, and began construction after Imran Khan’s visit to China in April 2019.

Col. Vinayak Bhat (retd)
Moqpondass SEZ: an overview | Source: Col. Vinayak Bhat (retd.) | ThePrint

New Delhi: After ignoring India’s objections to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, Islamabad and Beijing are now in the process of setting up a Special Economic Zone in the Gilgit-Baltistan region of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

Pakistan has long facilitated China’s forays into the Jammu and Kashmir region, ceding vast tracts of land in 1963 in the Shaksgam Valley, north of the Siachen Glacier. The Chinese built a road and military posts there in 2017.

ThePrint takes an exclusive look at the latest satellite imagery of the new SEZ, called Moqpondass.

Source: Col. Vinayak Bhat (retd.)

Feasibility, approval and agreements

Feasibility studies were carried out in May and June 2016. Satellite images of the time indicate vehicular movements and a helipad, possibly constructed to ferry VIPs.

Source: Col. Vinayak Bhat (retd.)

In May 2019, Pakistan’s Board of Investments (BoI) approved the fast-track development of nine SEZs, including Moqpondass, about 40 km from the city of Gilgit.

The agreement was reportedly signed between China and Pakistan during PM Imran Khan’s visit to Beijing in April 2019.

Construction

Construction began immediately after the signing of the agreement. Although the Pakistani government’s CPEC website says the area allotted is 250 acres, satellite imagery shows that the Chinese are utilising an area more than 750 acres.

The area occupied by the construction company consists of a storage area, a cement concrete production and mixer plant, and two crusher plants.

Source: Col. Vinayak Bhat (retd.)

The construction is in the early stages. Staff barracks are in typical hollow square shape. There are separate barracks, probably for Pakistani staff.

Source: Col. Vinayak Bhat (retd.)

The storage area is littered with steel reinforcing bars (rebars), and huge earth-moving equipment and vehicles.

The crushers and cement concrete plants are already operational and functioning efficiently.

Source: Col. Vinayak Bhat (retd.)

A small masjid has been constructed, possibly for the use of Pakistani staff.


Also read: Like China, Pakistan is using Islamabad & Karachi’s civil airports for military purposes


 

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4 COMMENTS

  1. That’s why u indians can’t leave kashmir alone. If kashmir is part of India why are your military and people treating the kashmir is so badly. If you really love the country and want it to be part of yours. The British should have separated it. Because you accepted all the bits that the british separated. So accept this aswell. Let kashmir be free and independent.

  2. Building on Indias land , land title deed of entire J&K including pok, Gilgit Balitsthan held by India=J&Ks accession document by the king. (Bi-lateral matter) .
    UT of Jammu, Kashmir valley and UT of Ladakh =(Innternal matter)..
    Free Country of Baluchistan should include a land corridor for Afganistan to the sea, so it will not need pakistan. Chinas port in Gwardar in free Baluchistan could host a US base kicking out Chinese and secure freedom of Baluchistan.

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