Faisalabad district was first known as Lyallpur district in the early 1900’s, when it came into being. This was during the British rule and the city was named in the honour of the Lieutenant-Governor of the Punjab, Sir Charles James Broadwood Lyall. Later in 1970’s, the name of the city was changed in the honour of King Faisal (Saudi Arabia), as Faisalabad, during his visit in Islamic summit. Faisalabad is the 3rd largest metropolis city of Pakistan and the major industrial hub. It is also called Manchester of Pakistan because it’s the biggest textile city and most of the industries here are related to textiles as same with Manchester in the UK. The China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) has given many opportunities for the business community of Faisalabad, especially for those who are linked with the textile sector. Faisalabad can achieve further economic growth, specifically in the industrial sector by utilising the opportunities available under CPEC. The central location of the city on the eastern route of CPEC, along with its 4500 acres’ industrial estate, largest industrial state of Pakistan, located on the main M-3 motorway provides the best opportunities for the setting up of new state-of-the-art industries through joint cooperation with Chinese entrepreneurs.

Faisalabad Industrial Estate Development & Management Company (FIEDMC) has developed Pakistan’s largest industrial estate under the name of “M-3 Industrial City” spanning over an area of 4356 acres, located on Motorway M-3, near Faisalabad city. M-3 industrial city (M-3IC) offers one window operation, the most important need for the business community, saving valuable time and money of citizens. This one window operation includes allotment of plots, provision of electricity, obtaining of NOCs / permits / registration from different government departments and provides all possible facilitation until the enterprise comes into full production and afterwards.

The development of industrial estate and provision of allied facilities on Sahianwala (M-3) Interchange, Faisalabad, is expected to achieve major goals like: create fiscal space for the government in order to allocate scarce resources to other development needs, to provide state-of-the-art and well managed industrial facilities that can cater to the needs of the people, to create public-private interaction thus providing an opportunity for private investors not only to earn profits for themselves but also giving a reasonable share to the government and to efficiently utilise the resources of the government for revenue-generating activities.

This project comprises not only industrial estate but also Canal Expressway, which makes a link between Sahianwala interchange at M-3 and Faisalabad city. It serves as a path for national growth and development. This route acts as an economic corridor. It provides a direct signal free access to Pakistan’s largest industrial Estate at Sahianwala and opens up Faisalabad’s highly valued green zone along the canal for trade, finance, housing and agriculture sectors.

In the associated projects, the Punjab government has shown a strong commitment to improving road network/intersections in order to reduce traffic congestion, travel time and environment pollution. This project will not only boost economic growth but also help to provide employment to a large number of people, thereby helping to decrease poverty and to improve the the wellbeing of life by focusing on socioeconomic gross root level factors in Faisalabad and the surrounding areas as well. It will also bring more FDI’s into the country, for instance, a great Chinese group has purchased about one-fourth of land in this zone and is expected to make an investment of $2 billion to set up a big cotton spinning facility. The estate would also play host to pharmaceutical, food, cereal, cosmetics, electrical panel and power industries as well as rice processing factories.

MUHAMMAD IBRAHIM YAHYA,

Faisalabad, May 30.