Assisting the Reform of Pakistan's SEZs and Industrial Estates

Locus Economica CEO Jean-Paul Gauthier meeting with finance professionals at the Sialkot industrial zone in Punjab, Pakistan.

In June 2015, Locus Economica was pleased to consult the Pakistan Ministry of Commerce on revisions to its special economic zones (SEZ) program.  Working under contract with the World Bank Jobs and Competitiveness Program, we thoroughly reviewed and provided recommendations on Pakistan's current SEZ policy and institutions, including its SEZ Act and implementing Rules.  As part of this effort, we  commented on numerous policy documents, laws, and plans for specific SEZ sites and offered guidance on how to improve the SEZ framework so that it attracts investment and fuels Pakistan's growth.

Both the national government and provincial governments like Punjab have ambitious zones projects planned.  In particular, Pakistan is seeking to make the best use of the substantial investments China is making to build economic corridors across the entire country to the Gwdar Port on the Arabian Sea.  We are optimistic that, if guided by the lessons learned from other zones programs, Pakistan's SEZ program will successfully leverage these opportunities to reduce poverty through infrastructure, investment, and business growth.