‘Ravi City To Be Made Part Of CPEC’

‘Ravi City To Be Made Part Of CPEC’
Ravi Urban Development Authority (RUDA) CEO Imran Amin has said that the Ravi City Urban Development Project would be made part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), financed by investors from both China and Saudi Arabia.

Speaking with the United States Counsellor for Commercial Affairs John Coronado, the RUDA CEO said that the development would be financed as an investment project, and would not depend on loans. He added that the RUDA was in discussion with investors from the United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates, and China.

“Our industrial zone will consist of 3,000 acres in which Saudi investors have signed a $600 million contract to complete the projects," Amin told the US official. “We will also decide to include this project in the CPEC during Pak-China conference at the year end.”

In a bid to attract American investment, Amin offered 'better environment and business facilities' for American companies, and said there were various opportunities for energy and wastewater treatment projects.  The US diplomat said that as such, the development would be an attractive proposition for investors.

Last month, the Supreme Court of Pakistan overturned a decision from the Lahore High Court which had halted development on the project. The LHC had ruled that the RUDA acted in violation of land acquisition laws.

The Supreme Court instead decided that land owners had been duly paid and granted permission for the government of Punjab to resume construction on the project.

The Ravi City Urban Development Project (RUDP) is a controversial, $7 billion, riverfront urban development project which aims to transform almost 50 kilometres along the banks of the Ravi River into a ‘high-quality urban development.’

Critics of the project said that the project had begun without an environmental impact assessment, and would unfairly deprive farmers of life-sustaining agricultural land. Some alleged the project was a 'giant land-grabbing endeavour'.