CPEC western route to be completed by 2018- NHA

Chairman National Highways Authority (NHA) Shahid Ashraf Tarar claimed that the western route of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), required for effective connectivity to Gwadar Port, would be completed by 2018.

NHA chairman while briefing the Senate Standing Committee on Communication also said that Pak-China working group on CPEC will meet in June or July where strategy would be devised for early completion of infrastructure projects. The committee met with Daud Khan Achakzai in the chair.

The committee raised several questions while saying that provinces have no representation in the Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) of the CPEC and federal government take decisions in isolation.

The government is not even sharing information/details related to CPEC agreement and presents lame excuses that it is an agreement between the two countries.

Point to be noted is that NHA chairman had earlier stated that the western route falling in the CPEC has been conceived under the short-term project and not as early harvest, which would be completed by 2020 and not by 2018. He further said that land has been acquired for the DI Khan-Yarik Motorway, while new project DI Khan-Zhob has been included in CPEC. Tarar said that Sukkur-Multan Motorway is being funded by China while Peshawar, Karachi and Quetta mass transit projects would be completed on priority basis.

Currently, China is financing only two projects namely, Havilian–Thakot and Multan-Sukkur road projects under the CPEC, while several other road projects are being financed by Asian Development Bank and the government of Pakistan through PSDP, USAID and other multilateral institutions, Tarar added.

He further said that Karachi-Hyderabad Motorway would also be completed by August.