QUETTA: Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Aslam Raisani has said that Afghan transit trade through Gwadar port could boost economic activities in the province.

Talking to reporters here on Sunday, he said the transit trade was imperative for sustainable development of the port.

He said that he had suggested to British officials that fuel should be supplied to Nato troops battling the Taliban in Afghanistan through Gwadar port because doing so would be economical.

Nawab Raisani said the Balochistan government was ready to provide security to Nato vehicles travelling through Gwadar. “The US and Nato have to only invest $1.5 billion for construction of roads and then they can easily supply fuel to their troops in Afghanistan from Gwadar,” he said.

He said the roads had been adversely affected by heavy Nato containers and oil tankers passing through Balochistan.

Regarding the Reko Diq project, Nawab Raisani said when the country could successfully enrich uranium it could also run gold and copper mines.

He said that he had thoroughly discussed the project with scientist Dr Samar Mubarakmand.

He said that if the Tethyan Copper Company refined 110,000 tons of ore its income would be only $78 million and if the government of Balochistan refined only 15,000 tons of ore its income would be $209 million.

Nawab Raisani said that no compromise would be made on the resources of Balochistan and the rights of people.

He reiterated the demand for a new social contract among the federating units to steer the country out of the prevailing political crisis.

“The new social contract under the 1940 Resolution offers solution to all ills of the country,” he said.

He said the demand of the new social contract by political parties was endorsement of his old stance.

He said the federal government had released Rs1.5 billion to the National Highway Authority for the construction of highways in Balochistan to lessen the sufferings of the people.

Source: Dawn