South Waziristan District

Trend Analysis




Area SqKms






Population Density / SqKm



Total Housing Units



Housing Units having Electricity



Housing Units Having Piped Water



Housing Unit using Gas for cooking



Source: Pakistan Bureau of Statistics


According to 2017 census, the population of South Waziristan was 466,984 with population density of 94 persons per square kilometers.

The  literacy  rate  is  extremely  low  in  the  district,  especially  for  women  (Source:  KPK  Bureau  of Statistics).

There  are  five major  tribes  in  the  region,  namely: the  Mehsud, the  Ahmadzai  Wazir  of  Wana,  the Bhittani of Jandola, the Burki of the Kaniguram area and the Dotani near the border of Zhob. Land use data from 2011-12 shows that 3% of the total geographic area of South Waziristan is arable, while more than 96% of the land is not available for cultivation. This puts intense pressure on the available land for agriculture and creates food insecurity in the agency. Due to the mountainous terrain and limited surface water resources, the agriculture is done on the few small plains using water from the mountain streams. There used to be thick forests on some of the higher ranges, such as the Shawal and Pir Ghal however, most of the wood has been cut in these areas.

South and North Waziristan are both highest producers of pine nuts (chilghoza) and Pakistan is reported to be the second highest exporter of pine nuts after China. However, due to lack of training in harvesting, cutting, roasting and processing there is high percentage of wastage.

WANA , PAKISTAN - APRIL 11:  A river valley cuts through the rugged terrain near Wana April 11, 2007 in Pakistan's South Waziristan tribal area near the Afghan border. The Pakistani army said that a force of some 1,000 tribesman in the area drove out Uzbek militants allied with Al Qaeda from the area, in an operation they say could be a model for clearing foreign fighters out of all the tribal areas. Local tribesman had been sheltering hundreds of foreign militants after they fled Afghanistan when the U.S. toppled the Taliban regime in 2001. The Pakistani government has said that the tribesmen's efforts vindicate its policy of signing peace deals with the ethnic Pashtun clans of the region, despite criticism from Western allies.  (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)

1. Minerals

As per FATA Development Authority’s Annual Report 2015-6 studies are underway for exploration of oil and gas in Baska North (FR DIK and South Waziristan district). Base camp has been established for further research and exploration.  Furthermore, two new blocks i.e. Wana Block in South Waziristan and Mir Ali Block in North Waziristan have been identified for further attraction of investment. South  Waziristan  also  holds  mineral reserves  of  Copper,  Gold,  Chromite,  Marble  and  Granite, however, the reserves are not yet estimated.

Bisbee Az


  1. High reserves of mineral deposits in the area.
  2. Possibility of Value addition to Marble product by using state of the art technology.
  3. Process innovation as per international standards.
  4. Employment generation and skill development of the local community.
  5.  Close proximity to Central Asia – for trade and export.


To fully utilize the potential of this sector, following steps can be taken:

  1. Identify and work on projects which have capacity to generate revenue on public private partnership model if feasible
  2. Investments to improve common infrastructure and facilities should be a continual process.
  3. The office of KP Mines & Mineral Development Department should offer regular assistance to industry in general on modern mining techniques, equipment handling and environmental safety.
  4. KP Mines & Mineral Development Department needs to prepare an Investor’s Brief that clearly quantify / identify the potential of mining minerals in the area, and state the current level of investigation for the total amount of minerals available.
  5. Encourage all state owned and private banks to offer Islamic banking products/services to the local mine owners and processors in order to enhance production and process the minerals at international standards.

2. Conclusion

Owing to militancy and prevailing law and order situation in the South Waziristan for the past decades, the opportunities to carry out businesses were totally  ruined. However, the district is now returning towards peace and the area would be feasible for establishing business and generating revenues  by exploring oil  and  gas  reserves  and mineral  deposits  and  its  further  processing and  value  addition. Similarly  studying the value  chain  of  pine nut harvesting and handling and taking necessary steps to  overcome the gaps will enhance revenue for the locals and improve the product quality.