ISLAMABAD/BEIJING – During the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown, the Chinese port operator at Pakistan's southwest Port of Gwadar focused its attention on forest-planting, and has now successfully completed a friendship forest in a city situated in a desert climate, gifting the city its first ever green park.
At the foot of the area's Koh-e-Batil Hill, the forest spreads across 60 mu (4 hectares) of land provided by the Pakistani government for free. The construction of the park was supported by the local community and the Pakistani Navy, which promptly relocated its camps and buildings in just two weeks to evacuate the land needed for forest planting, according to an article published by Global Times.
Located in Pakistan's southwest province of Balochistan, Gwadar Port is a key project of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a flagship project of the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Since its operation, the port has begun to play a new role as an economical transit stop and time-saving trade port for land-locked Afghanistan when it ships fertilizer.
To build a forest in Gwadar's desert climate with almost no rain is no easy task, and the China Overseas Ports Holding Company - the port's operator - joined hands with the city government of Puyang, in Central China's Henan Province, to work toward the target of affording the local community a green park in as short a time as possible that would have low maintenance costs and be easily accessible.
The most advanced irrigation technology is applied here, a manager of the forest park's builder said, noting that the building of the forest received on-site guidance by a team of Chinese agriculture experts.
A total of 100,000 trees, shrubs and flowers that resist high-temperature, high saline-alkali soils were planted, with a 10,000-meter-long irrigation pipeline system, and a storage tanker holding up to 3,000 cubic meters of water, according to the company.
"It takes us about 10 months to complete the friendship forest, roughly coinciding with the time period of the pandemic, and we are continuing work to improve the park and the forest," Zhang Baozhong, chairman of China Overseas Ports Holding Company, told the Global Times.
The fact that a forest of this size can be added to the extremely hot and dry land of Gwadar in such a short time shows how much importance China's BRI builders attach to the concept of green development - a concept also specifically implemented in China to help work toward a sustainable ecological civilization, analysts pointed out.
Xu Liping, director of the Center for Southeast Asian Studies at the Chinese academy of Social Sciences in Beijing, told the Global Times on Monday that while infrastructure-building lies at the core of the BRI development, the green aspects of BRI development also began to achieve tangible results in recent years. The new feature is an important accent of BRI's sustainable approach toward development.
"Such a development approach is in accordance with UN's development goals and that of the BRI's. It marks the fact that BRI development has entered a high-quality development phase," Xu added.
Pakistani rupee continue to witness further losses against US dollar in the open market on despite positive economic indicators and massive surge in Stock Market.
On Tuesday, the dollar was being quoted at 285.1 for selling and 288.15 for buying purposes for customers.
Euro price moves down by Rs2 to 312 for buying and 315 for selling. British Pound rate stands at 358.5 for buying, and 362 for selling after increase.
UAE Dirham AED stands at 78 whereas the Saudi Riyal also witnessed fall and new price stands at 76.25.
|UK Pound Sterling||GBP||358.5||362|
|Hong Kong Dollar||HKD||36.24||36.59|
|New Zealand Dollar||NZD||173.44||175.44|
KARACHI – Gold continues to move upward in local market amid surge in international rates.
On Tuesday, the single tola of 24 Karat gold was available at Rs217,600, and the price for 10-gram gold saw increase of Rs943 to reach Rs186,557.
Globally, yellow metal went up by $12 to settle at $2,015 per ounce.
Last week, per tola gold price increased by Rs800 per tola, and it hovers around two month high.
|Lahore||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Karachi||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Islamabad||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Peshawar||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Quetta||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Sialkot||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Attock||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Gujranwala||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Jehlum||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Multan||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Bahawalpur||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Gujrat||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Nawabshah||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Chakwal||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Hyderabad||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Nowshehra||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Sargodha||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Faisalabad||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|
|Mirpur||PKR 217,600||PKR 2,600|