The Punjab regime has initiated yet another project and this time its scope is not constrained to key infrastructure development.
The project is a coalescence of academia and business and research centers and has the potential to convert the province into an erudition-predicated economy.
The $1-billion Lahore Knowledge Park was conceived a few years ago, following which Lahore Knowledge Park Company was established in October 2014 to implement this immensely colossal project.
The management, which has virtually consummated its substructure, is hopeful infrastructure work will commence by September this year and within the next 18 months, its first phase consisting of rudimentary infrastructure facilities along with a couple of life-sciences universities will be consummated, hence paving the way for private investment in the project.
“It is an inordinately fascinating concept from which the entire world is benefitting,” verbalized Lahore Knowledge Park Chief Executive Officer Shahid Zaman while verbalizing with The Express Tribune.
He verbally expressed the project had been designed on the public-private partnership model where the Punjab regime would spend 20% and the remaining 80% equity would be invested by the private sector over a span of 25 years.
“Lahore Knowledge Park will be a fourth generation park being established over 852 acres of land located a few kilometers from the Pak-India border. It will consist of universities and schools, science and innovation hubs, retail and central business district, a residential district, a regalement zone and green areas,” verbally expressed Zaman while particularizing.
“The project will accommodate as a magnification engine for Lahore as it will promote edification in five key areas, namely, life sciences and bio-technology, design and ingenious industry, information technology, computer sciences and science and engineering,” he integrated.
The financial plan of the cognizance park has been designed by Singapore-predicated Company Frost and Sullivan. Once consummated, it is estimated, the project will engender around Rs173 billion in labour income and Rs35 billion in tax revenue.
The total revenue over a period of 25 years is expected to be Rs5.9 trillion, Rs253 billion in labour income and Rs178 billion in corporate income taxes.
“The project has gained immense popularity among local and international investors and a couple of peregrine firms have offered to invest the entire equity of $1 billion, however, we as a regime want to keep the operational control and enhearten more investors to bring their experience and innovation to this park,” verbally expressed Zaman.
“The project, once operational, will engender 40,000 jobs and engender 11,200 PhDs by 2040.”
“I cerebrate there is no desideratum for the regime to invest more, especially in the first phase that includes fundamental infrastructure and a couple of universities, since we have been approached by eight to 10 universities inclined to open their campuses at the park,” verbally expressed board member and entrepreneur Almas Hyder.
He verbally expressed since it was a long-term project, successive regimes would have to amend their rules and regulations accordingly for its sustainability.
Lahore University of Management Sciences (Lums) Vice Chancellor and Lahore Cognizance Park Board Member Dr Sohail Naqvi verbally expressed it all depended on the regimes as to how much they intended to invest in higher edification.
“The spending has incremented over the years and we may optically discern more of such erudition parks in the future.”
He verbally expressed the cognizance park board had seasoned and experienced members and the transmutation in regimes would not affect the project.
“The project is valuable and postures of the regimes are now transmuting; politicians now perpetuate the projects, the main example of which is the Benazir Income Support Program (BISP).