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MPs for finalising CPEC central route on priority

ADB, federal govt also funding CPEC projects, NA body informed, Chairman for establishing SEZs in less developed areas

March 16, 2018

ISLAMABAD - A parliamentary committee was Thursday informed that work on both eastern and western routes of CPEC is in progress and the government is striving to complete the work on the later ahead of the former.

This was stated by Director China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), Hassan Daud while briefing the National Assembly Committee on Planning, Development and Reforms here. The meeting of the Standing Committee, which was held under the chairmanship of Abdul Majeed Khan Khanankhail, recommended that the central route of CPEC might be finalised for the sake of progress of backward areas of south Punjab. While it was also pointed out that the central route will be the shortest possible route of CPEC .

Chairman of the committee said that those routes of CPEC , passing through the backward areas, should be constructed on priority basis as it will help connecting these areas to the rest of the country.

Director CPEC informed the committee that besides China, Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the government of Pakistan is also funding CPEC projects. Director CPEC said: “They are working on two routes of CPEC and they are striving to complete the western route ahead of the eastern one.” The committee was informed that the construction work on Islamabad to Dera Ismail Khan road section will be completed by 2020. Director CPECinformed that they have requested for the Chinese funds for the construction of DI Khan Zhob section.

Chairman committee observed that the provinces have recommended the Special Economic Zones (SEZs) in the areas where industries are already existing. The SEZs should be established in the less developed areas so residents’ of those areas could get jobs and can help in poverty alleviation, he recommended.

Officials of NHA informed the committee that Multan-Sukkhur Motorway will be completed during 2019. The paper work for Muzafar Abad-Mirpur road has been completed. Chairman of the committee questioned: “Why the cost of the project of AJK increases multiple times and what are the reasons Who is responsible for the cost escalation, government of AJK or the Planning Commission?” The Committee also considered the issue of transfer of land for the establishment of University of Thal, Kallur Kot, District Bahakkar and establishment of 132 KV grid station at Kallur Kot. The DCO, District Bhakkar assured the Committee that the land would be transferred to Fasialabad Electric Supply Company for the establishment of 132 KV grid station at Kallur Kot and also land will be transferred to HEC for the establishment of University of Thal, Kallur Kot, District Bhakkar within a month.

The Committee also pondered over the issue of construction of bridge on River Indus connecting Kallur Kot with D.I. Khan. The representative of National Highway Authority assured the Committee that the contractor might be mobilized after fulfilling formalities of the contract. A member of Committee said that tourism is not getting promoted in Chitral due to worse conditions of the roads.

The meeting was attended by MNA Malik Ibrar Ahmed, Dr Asma Mamdot, Junaid Akbar, Shaheen Shafiq and Iftikhar-ud-Din. The senior officers from the Ministry of Planning, Development and Reforms and NHA also attended the meeting


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