ISLAMABAD - The agreement for handing over the operations of deep sea Gwadar harbour to China Overseas Port Holding Authority will be ratified on Feb 18 (tomorrow).
The accord-signing ceremony will be held at Aiwan-e-Sadr (presidency). Sources divulged that the transition of control from Port of Singapore Authority (PSA) to COPHA would be completed within a week after the pact was inked. On a side note, it was also revealed that the terms and conditions of the deal remained unchanged.
Gwadar Port is a warm-water, deep-sea port. It is located at the apex of the Arabian Sea and the mouth of the Persian Gulf, approximately 460km west of Karachi, 75km east of Pakistan’s border with Iran and 380km northeast of the nearest point in Oman across the Arabian Sea.
It is situated on the eastern bay of a natural hammerhead-shaped peninsula protruding into the Arabian Sea from the coastline.
The harbour is owned by the state-run Gwadar Port Authority and operated by PSA (2007-2012). Following the completion of Phase I, the Pakistan government on February 1, 2007, signed a 40-year agreement with PSA for the development and operation of the tax-free port and duty-free trade zone. The PSA was the highest bidder for the Gwadar port after DP World backed out of the bidding process.