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Sialkot — world’s football manufacturing capital — gets a green makeover

Sialkot — world’s football manufacturing capital — gets a green makeover

A worker applies adhesives to the edges of a design on a football ahead of the FIFA World Cup 2014 in Brazil at a factory in Sialkot. – AFP

ISLAMABAD: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is helping the Punjab government build sustainable and livable mid-level cities by upgrading basic infrastructure and services.

This includes Sialkot, a thriving business hub known for manufacturing footballs and high-quality surgical instruments, according to a short video released by the ADB on Friday.

It said the ADB’s support for urban development is helping boost Sialkot’s competitiveness, create jobs, and improve quality of life in the city.

It said the city manufactures over 70% of the world’s footballs. “If you have ever played football, chances are the ball was made in Sialkot in Pakistan.”

The city is also the source of footballs for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Doha, Qatar.

Sialkot is a thriving business hub known not just for its football production, but also for manufacturing surgical instruments.

Forward Group and Sialkot Airport Chairman Khwaja Masood Akhtar said: “We have international customers. They come to see our factory, and for business meetings. Therefore, it is very important that the infrastructure of the city like roads, railways, airports, and dry ports, should be up to the mark.”

It was highlighted that the ADB is helping develop growing cities like Sialkot so public services can meet rising demand.

Water infrastructure is being upgraded for reliable supply, while sewerage and sanitation systems are also being rehabilitated.

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With the ADB’s help, over 450 tons of waste are effectively collected every day and communities are taught better waste management.

Social activist Farkhanda Ishtiaq said: “We learned about solid waste management at home. It was very beneficial for me as I learned how I can segregate my kitchen waste.”

Rabia Ahad, a Sialkot resident, said children used to play in a very congested environment at home, but now if you look around, the children are very relaxed.


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