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Posts Tagged GDA

History of Gwadar: Past, Present and Future

Although a few years back the word Gwadar was not known to many but the past few years have changed the fact. Gwadar is one of the most spoke about cities of the world. Gwadar is a port city in the South-Western Cost of the province of Balochistan in Pakistan. The Gwadar city is located on the shores of Arabian Sea. The city is almost 700 KM away from Karachi (the largest city of Pakistan). Another amazing geographic fact linked with Gwadar is that it is near the border of Iran and is situated to the east of Persian Gulf- which is right opposite to Oman. In the past, from 1783 to 1958, the Gwadar port was in possession of Oman.

For most of the history, Gwadar remained a small size settlement where the economy was majorly based on fishing. The strategic value of the location was accepted in 1954 when it was pointed out as a perfect site to be used as a deepwater port by “US Geological Survey”. The potential of the Gawdar port remained unrecognized during different governments of Pakistan till 2001. In the year 2001, the construction of the initial phase of Gawadar was initiated.

General Pervaiz Musharraf inaugurated the first phase in the year 2007 with a net cost of $248 million.  However, even after the construction, the port remained under-utilized for a number of reasons including security concerns, lack of investment, and the failure of management of the government in transferring the land as per commitment to the operator of the port which was “Port of Singapore Authority

By the time Pakistan reached 2015, the government of Pakistan announced a patch up China to develop a mega project of CPEC (China Pakistan Economic Corridor) which was worth $46 billion. The project is believed to a part of China’s One Belt One Road program. “China’s Xi in Pakistan to cement huge infrastructure projects, submarine sales”. Gwadar is the backbone of the One Belt One Road project and about 1.153 billion dollars are said to be invested in the city as a part of the project CPEC (Wikipedia). The aim of this project is to link the Northern side of Pakistan with the Western side of China through the seaport.

The Origin

Just like other parts of Balochistan, the Gwadar city also had some ancient roots that are not clearly approached yet. However, the city shows inhibition linked with the bronze age of the settlement. According to the studies, for a period the city was under the regime of the Achaemenid Persian Empire. The history claims that this area was conquered by the founder of the Persian Empire known as “Cyrus the Great.”

During his journey back to home, the Alexander the Great stepped their feet in the areas which are now known to us as Balochistan. The then consisted of inhabited and Dry Mountains. After the collapse of Empire of Alexander the area ruled by Seleucus Nicator who was one of the generals of Alexander. Later during 303BCE, the region came under the rule of Mauryan after the Seleucus made peace with Emperor Chandragupta.

The Territory of Gwadar:

After a millennium, the Arab-Muslims invade the region and in next century there were the areas was ruled by different powers. While for the next two centuries, the area was ruled by local tribes of Balochistan.  From 1863 to 1879 the area of Gwadar remained to headquarter of the British Assistant Political agent and remained a Fortnightly port for British Indian Steamship Navigation Company. It also worked as the port for telegraph and post office. Later in the 1950s, the port was headed over to Pakistan.

Gwadar Port of Pakistan

Soon after the independence of Pakistan the Balochistan acceded to Pakistan and was allocated as a separate district. At that time Gwadar was not a part of Balochistan. Later in the year 1958, the Gwadar port and adjacent areas were handed over to Pakistan by Muscat. By then it was given the status of Tehsil of Balochistan. Later in the year 1977, the Makran District was upgraded and divided into two divisions named as district Turbat, Gwadar and Panjgur.

September 8, 1958, was that date when Pakistan purchased the Gwadar enclave from Oman for 5.5 billion PKR. The agreement signed stated two important clauses; the first one stated that Balochistan will offer an army recruitment platform for Oman as a result of which Balochis will establish a major part of Omani forces and secondly the resources of Gwadar will be developed in future.

In the year 1993, the Government of Pakistan conceived the plan to develop Gwadar as a major port city and connect it with a rail and highway network. Officially the construction of Gwadar started on March 2002 phase one of which was completed in March 2007.  The port was inaugurated on 20th of March the same year.

Developments in Gwadar:

From the year 2002 to 2007 Gwadar underwent some major developments. In 2002 the NHA (Pakistan National Highway Authority) started production of the 653 Km- long Makran Coastal Highway, this highway was meant to link Karachi with Gwadar via Ormara and Pansi moving on to linking it with all other highways in Pakistan. The project was completed in 2004. In the year 2003, the Gwadar Development Authority started planning and development of the Gwadar for which an authority with the name  “Industrial Estate Development of Gwadar” was formulated to deal with the industrial activities. The three currently functional multipurpose berths of the deep-sea-port have a capacity to handle carriers of 30,000 deadweight tonnage (DWT) ). The construction started in the year 2004. By the year 2006, the Gwadar Development Authority conceived established and adopted the 50-year plan for the City of Gwadar. Later in 2007, the Civil Aviation Authority of Pakistan acquired a huge area to construct a greenfield airport that was named as the New Gwadar International Airport (Wikipedia).

The Gwadar Port:

Since a long time, China has an interest in Gwadar Port. In 2013 the China Overseas Port Holdings Limited assimilated the Gwadar Port. The Gwadar port is very important for China as about 60% of the oil in China comes from the Persian Gulf. This oil is transported by the Ships that travel for about 16,000 KM in the time duration of 2 to 3 months. This journey is full of risks including; bad weather, pirates, or political rivals, along with many others. It is also risky for the only commercial port of China that is located in the Shanghai. Gwadar will help to reduce the risks and distance limiting it to 50000 Km and can also serve China around the year.

China has remained fully involved in designing the project. It has provided about 80% of the cost of constructing the port. More than 500 Chinese workers are working on the port, around the clock.

China is keenly focused on setting up the Gwadar port because they find at advantageous in terms of saving time and security of import and exports. In this regard, China has paid 360 million USD to Pakistan for the expansion and the up gradation of the import and export processing around the year. The transportation will be done by Karakoram Highway China to Pakistan. The Government of Pakistan is highly committed to providing a secure base to China in shape of Gwadar. This will help Pakistan to secure the Gwadar port and to strengthen the Pak-China relationship.

The Culture of Gwadar:

The location and history of Gwadar have given it a unique yet interesting blend of cultures. The Arabic influence on the city can clearly be seen because of the strong impact of Omani era as well as the closeness with the Arabian Peninsula. The legacy os Omani can also be witnessed in the local population of which you can trace the lineage to Afro-Arab and the Zanj Slaves. These people came and settled in the area in the Omani rules. You can also find some remains of building constructed in Omani era.

The Geographic Position of Gwadar in Relation to Oman

Topography:

Gwadar is located on the sandy and narrow strip, with a natural hammerhead-shaped point linked with a coastline of Makran.  The points of the port make two perfect yet naturally curved bays on each side of the point.

The North side of the city and the Gwadar Promontory is flat and barren.  The Koh-e-Mehndi (the white clay) is a prominent exception that is raised sharply from the plans to the Northern-East of Gwadar. Followed by the mega earthquake in 2013, a small island was formed which is located almost 2 KM off the Coast (Wikipedia).

The Population:

The population of the city has increased for about 85,000 as reported in the year 2014. Majority of the people living in Gwadar have their roots linked with the Balochistan.

The Climate of Gwadar:

Gwadar has extreme hot and deserted climate with very little precipitation and massive variations in winter and summer temperature. The ocean had a great influence on the temperature that is lower in summer and higher in winter. On average the temperature in June remains 31 to 31°C while in winters it fluctuates between 18 to 19°C. The uniformity of the temperature is distinctive of the Coastal Makran region.

Also, the wind moving down by the plateau of Balochistan give a cooling influence, otherwise the winter remains pleasant. Winters are shorter as compare to summer. The Gwadar is located out of the monsoon belt. For this reason, it occasionally receives the monsoon rains in the summer season. While in winters there is heavy rainfall due to Western Disturbance. On average the annual rainfall is about 3 inches.

Administration and Neighborhood of Gwadar

Gwadar serves as headquarter for Gwadar tehsil and Gwadr District. While the Gwadar tehsil is sub divided into 5 different union counsels on the basis of administration named; Gwadar Central, South Gwadar, North Gwadar, Pishukan, Sorbandar.

  •  The Gwadar Central in sub-divided into different parts named as; Gazrawan, Komagri, Mohallah Zahoor Shah, Sohrabi, Saleh Muhammad and Usmania.
  •  The South Gwadar is Divided into; Kamari, Mohallah Karim Bakhsh, Mohallah Shahdu Band, Mullah Band, Murad Bakhsh, Sarabi, Sheikh Umar and Tobagh.
  •  The North Gwadar is sub-divided into; Lal Baksh, Mohalla Baloch, Mohalla Mir Abdul Ghafoor and Mujahid.

The Strategic Value of Gwadar

The Gwadar port can help China to work with around the clock active port with security and time efficiency. It will also offer China an attending post to observe the Indian naval activities around the Gulf of Aden, the Persian Gulf, South Asia and Central Asia. It means that it will cover the following regions; Central Asian republics, Caspian Region, Iran and Afghanistan. Among all these Caspian Sea is the most potential region in terms of monetary approaches. At the same time, it offers vital positioning to the area geographically. Iran is one of those countries that are supporting the development of the Port of Gwadar.

Gwadar- The Free Zone

In the past, the economy of Gwadar has mostly remained dependent on fishing. However, with the passage of time and in recent times, the economy of Gwadar has undergone some major transformation resulting in the transformation is a small fishing village in the major Port city of Pakistan. It has helped in enhancing the communication links between all parts of Pakistan.  The 1400 Km Trans-Afghan Gas Pipeline also known as the TAP will be linked from Turkmenistan to Gwadar port. It is believed to be a comprehensive project that will boost the Natural gas dealers of Turkmen to reach the market of South Asia that will lead to many financial benefits for the region overall.

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An Essential Guide to Real Estate Investment in Gwadar

Investing in Gwadar is not simple and interesting as in any other part of Pakistan. There are a number of reasons to support this fact and one of the basic reasons that make the real estate investment in Gwadar a bit critical is that it has just started its journey. Although sprouting at the moment, the city is soon expected to be the leading international port city of Pakistan. Talking about the about all the potential the Gwadar port city project seems to be opening doors of amazing opportunities and filling up all the needs of international trading in Pakistan.

For all the said reasons the city seems to be transforming the infrastructure and giving a hope to many investors who are looking forward to earn some big amount in the coming years.

Also read: Top 3 Housing Schemes In Gwadar

With all the potential, Gwadar port city is offering something that was never offered in Pakistan’s real estate market before. Thus we can see a number of potential challenges in this case as well. For this reason, we can clearly say that the Gwadar city investment is not same as of buying land in any other part of Pakistan. There is no such thing as earning quick gains.

According to the experts, the investors who are willing to invest in Gwadar must know that it will take many years to get what they are looking for or what they have been promised with. The process of earning ROI (return on investment) is a long-term deal. However, seeing occasional gains is another thing and is something that can be seen in many other projects in the pipeline. Also one cannot predict any specific pattern in this regard.

The experts also recommend that investors for Gwadar must not have any misconceptions or false assumptions about their investment duration in the port city or should not fall for any fake promises.Thus, investors who are buying lands for profits must not fall for fake and unreliable sources including agents and developers etc. Investing in open and bigger lands that are bound to increase their value is better than buying smaller pieces of land at higher rates. Here are some of the most common misconceptions about buying and selling real estate that is must to keep in mind while buying a land in the Gwadar.

Big is Best Size

The parts of the Port city, located far from the old town is not a preferred place for the buyers as there are no lands smallest than an acre in these areas. This is better when you have an open land owned by any local party and not by the government. The reason for this trend is the fact that the land owners have many acres of lands and from which only a part of the property lies on the road that are marked to become spacious and wide. These connecting roads are the real value of for the land owners.

In such cases, selling small pieces of lands is a bad idea and can earn limited or no benefits to the land owners. Selling smaller chunks facing the road will decrease the value of land that is a bit far from the roads and thus it can be a bad deal to sale the lands in smaller bits. For the said reason the buyers are left with no choice to sell bigger areas that, in some case is bigger than 50 acres.

However, if you are looking to buy a small piece of land in the Gwadar Port City, you must look for the areas that are a far from the main road. At times it has been found that the smaller lands are of expensive as compare to that of the bigger plots. Thus the choice is completely on your preferences for investment and your priorities.

Verification Criteria

As stated by the GDA (Gwadar Development Authority) the buyers’ need to verify their NOC issues for any specific project they are willing to invest it. This is of great importance as many of the land owners have sold their properties without having necessary approvals from the GDA.

While buying any open land, the buyers must also make sure that the land is available for resale. The GDA, in many parts of Gwadar, had banned the transfer of property. Thus the buyers must make sure that they are not scammed by paying for any such property.

The GDA recommends that when you are about to pay the token or advance money for the land you want to acquire, you must share the information in the newspaper or ask the GDA authorities if they have any issues with the land or not. Also, check if the land is available for sale/resale and authority transfer or not. Once you find that the land is safe for further proceeding, you can take an official with you and mark the land.

It is also recommended to the buyers to mark the area before closing the deal for buying this land. There are chances that during the process you find that the land is disputed. In any such case you must not proceed with paying the remaining amount until the matter is sorted out completely.

Ground Realities vs. Claims:

A most important ground reality is that no commercial or residential property in Gwadar is developing at a fast pace. The developers at Gwadar have no long-run plans or any clear time-frame for the completion of the projects. So if anyone says that the project will be executed and will be set to earn benefits in few years, they are probably lying. Even for a residential property buying, it is important to keep in mind that there would be need of a time frame of almost 5 years to complete the project. There can be some projects that would not be available for buyer’s complete possession even after 5 years. Thus important is to do a complete check and invest in the societies that are supported by reliable sources.

Where Should You Invest?

In a single line we can say that the decision depends on your priorities. It depends on your budget and you’re short as well as long run goals with this investment. However, here are some of the most appreciated investment areas that you may consider:

The Sanghar Housing Scheme is a fast, secure and well regulated society that comes with no legal complications. It is also a unique location of the Gwadar Port City. The scheme offers both residential and commercial plots that are a perfect choice for all kinds of mega projects like shopping malls and others.

The Naval Anchorage Gwadar is the best option for you if you are looking for a land approved by the Gwadar Development Authority, a gated community for your family settlement. The housing society is located right on the pinpoint of Rakshan Avenu and the Coastal Highway. The community is offered with a wide range of self-sustaining amenities for the residents and up to mark the health care facilities. You can also find a range of schools, colleges and universities to process your living in a better way.

The Airport Road Commercials is another perfect choice where the commercial activities are present even today. However there are some legal issues and minor irregularities in operations because of which it stands after the Sanghar Housing Scheme.

The Marine Drive Commercials is the next in the list of most preferred housing schemes. It will also be developing as a commercial hub soon after the airport. There is not any commercial activity at the location currently and there are some irregularities in the sale purchase process of land in this area.

The Jinnah Avenue Commercials and New Town Society are also reliable options with better profit opportunities in coming years. However, important is to visit the sites personally rather than just depending on the 3D images or any videos about the locations you are willing to invest it.

Working on ground realities can help the investors to make better decisions and make a deal that looks real. Investment in the Gwadar City is something that needs a lot of persistence and tolerance before it returns you amazing sum of benefits and earning opportunities. Remember, those who have the long run motive can earn the maximum reward.

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Top 3 Housing Schemes in Gwadar, Pakistan

Since the inception of the Gwadar Port in Pakistan, the property investors have shown massive interest in this deserted city of Pakistan, hunting the best real estate deals in Pakistan. Further fuel added to the fire is the China Pakistan Economic Corridor. The project has also had an impact on the concept of Gwadar and it is believed to be a future hub of the international trade activities. For the said reason it is perceived as a huge opportunity for the property investors from across the globe.

Also read: Why You Must Visit Gwadar: Reasons That You Would Not Like To Miss Out

More and more investors are trying to be first in the rat race in the history of real estate in Pakistan. Some investors have acquired massive lands with an aim to launch a planned commercial and housing development. On the other hand, some have managed to reserve lands in most profitable projects like the one offered by the GDA (Gwadar Development Authority).

There are many commercial and housing projects that have come up in Gwadar in past few years. These projects have urged the investors to invest their money for a massive return on investment (ROI) in coming future.

At other instance, there are some government-sponsored housing projects named as New Town and Sangar which have earned some fast and massive return on investment. However, there are some private housing schemes that have shown their massive potential in recent times and people have started showing great interest in those schemes as well.

Benefits of Investing in Gwadar:

To present an overview and to point out the potential of the investment in Gwadar here are few reasons, enough to convince the investors to invest their money in Gwadar.

Government Incentives:

The Gwadar, with each passing day, is becoming one of the major international port cities of the world. Both provincial and federal government of Pakistan has their clear focus on the development of the area. With an aim to attract the investors, the government has established special industrial and commercial zones with precise tax remission and economical electricity in the area. The moment industries will start working in the area, the demand for the commercial and housing will start benefiting the property investors.

Higher ROI (Return on Investment):

If you compare the price of a per marla land in other cities of Pakistan with that of Gwadar, you will find that the rate is at its lowest at the moment (in most of the areas in Gwadar). Now if you review the pricing trends of Gwadar you can clearly see a surge in prices while a stable growth in other parts of the Gwadar. This situation is for a very limited time, sooner there will be new shapes according to the long-term plans. The moment the plan is executed and the basic infrastructure of the port city is built, the world will see a sudden surge in the prices.

Also read: Why To Invest In Gwadar?

The Contemporary Development Standards:

Gwadar is planned as an international port city and for this reason, it is developed with a focus to offer the latest state of the art technologies and modern development standards. The master plan of Gwadar is designed with experts keeping in mind all the future needs and with plenty of room for future expansions as well. The basic housing schemes at Gwadar are developed according to the directions of the GDA to offer the future residents of Gwadar with a clutter-free master plan housing society.

The Contemporary Development Standards:

Gwadar is planned as an international port city and for this reason, it is developed with a focus to offer the latest state of the art technologies and modern development standards. The master plan of Gwadar is designed with experts keeping in mind all the future needs and with plenty of room for future expansions as well. The basic housing schemes at Gwadar are developed according to the directions of the GDA to offer the future residents of Gwadar with a clutter-free master plan housing society.

Security is Guaranteed:

The role of Pakistani Army is no exception when it comes to talking about the stabilized security conditions in Pakistan. Just like other parts of the world the Pak Army has played a significant role in bringing peace to the Gwadar. Plus the Pak Army had taken over the responsibility of taking care of the situation and offering a peaceful environment to both local and foreign investors and professionals to facilitate them with steady and smooth development activities. And the presence of Pak Army is also believed to be a reason to protect the project and offer a secure environment that will boost the productivity of the plan.

For those who are interested in investing in the Gwadar, we would like to mention that there are a number of housing and commercial projects that are on board in the port city. Here are the top 3 most appreciated investment targets of the investors and each one is appreciated for a number of reasons.

1. The Sangar Housing Scheme:

Sangar Hosuing Scheme Gwadar

Located on the Koh-e-Batil, the Sangar is also sometimes spelt as Singhar Housing Scheme. This housing scheme is located on the southern side of the Koh-e-Batil. The prime attraction of this society is the Oman Sea Port and the Arabian Sea view. This place is also a home for the very famous Pearl Continental Hotel. Being one of the most recently established societies the investors are now granted the property possessions and are almost one of the most expensive residential scheme in Gwadar.

The housing society aims to offer the residents with a sustained and healthy development along with a vibrant place that can offer people with a strong infrastructure, state of the art housing and tourism and a comprehensive support for the development of the Gwadar City.

The project aims to adopt a balanced approach to integrate a sustainable development and incorporate secure values with the maximum use of the waterfront available around the location. It is also focused on high-quality architecture and amazing design elements to make it one of the most liveable places of Pakistan.

2. The New Town Housing Scheme:

New Town Gwadar

This one is a state-owned project and is undoubtedly an amazing choice for investment. The Jinnah Avenue is linked with this society. Apart from this easy approach, the Marine Drive is also linked to the society. This society consists of 5 phases. It has residential plots of all sizes, from 120 yards to 1000 yards.

The New Town housing society is regulated by the GDA and is offering massive opportunities for investment in both commercial and residential plots. The New Town also has an amazing sea facing commercial plots that are in the way to marine drive area.

The society currently has 4 phases and is situated in the center of the city. However, before buying a plot in this society you must look for the documentation and be careful during the entire process.

3. The Naval Anchorage Gwadar:

Naval Anchorage Gwadar

The Naval Anchorage became a part of the Gwadar real estate in 2017 and has overshadowed all the private housing societies in Gwadar since then. This housing society is sponsored by the Pakistan Navy Benevolent Association and is well known for its quality housing projects. It is also considered as one of the safest and the most advanced investment opportunity in Gwadar.

Some of the main reasons why you must invest in the Naval Anchorage Gwadar include; its background with the Pakistan navy, a strong background of housing development, safer investment, mega housing project, planned community, prime location near the zero point, demand in the market and higher ROI.

Be it residential or commercial, for all projects, the investment in Gwadar is a great opportunity for the investors from around the globe. As the CPEC promises to change the picture of Pakistan in coming years and opening doors to new opportunities and a brighter Pakistan.

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