CDWP approves 64 projects worth Rs 236b despite crunch

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ISLAMABAD – Empty coffers that have forced the government to slash down the current fiscal’s Public Sector Development Programme by a massive Rs 100 billion did not deter the Central Development Working Party (CDWP) of the Planning Commission from approving 64 projects worth Rs 236 billion for the current fiscal year.
An official statement said Deputy Chairman Planning Commission Dr Nadeem Ul Haque chaired a meeting of CDWP that considered 64 projects costing Rs 236 billion including foreign aid of Rs 107 billion, of which 37 projects relate to infrastructure sector are worth Rs 187 billion, 19 projects in social sector worth Rs 44 billion and 8 projects worth Rs 5 billion related to food, agriculture and industrial sector were approved.
CDWP is authorized to approve projects costing up to Rs 1 billion. It recommended 24 projects costing Rs 218 billion to ECNEC for consideration, while 13 projects have been revised and their net addition in cost was Rs 25 billion. The approved energy sector projects include 121 MW Allai Khwar Hydropower Project of Rs 13 billion, Augmentation of 500/132 KV and 220/132 KV transformers in NTDC System costing Rs 4 billion and Natural Gas Efficiency Project costing Rs 37 billion.
The project will be implemented with financial assistance of World Bank with main objective to reduce gas losses in the SSGC system. The meeting also approved doubling of 126 KM Shahdara Bagh to Lalamusa track at a cost of Rs 14 billion, doubling of track from Khanewal to Raiwind at the cost of Rs 13 billion, doubling of track on Shahdra Bagh to Faisalabad at a cost of Rs 11 billion.
Lower Bari Doab Canal Improvement Project at a cost of Rs 30 billion, Punjab Irrigation System Improvement Project at a cost of Rs 9.3 billion, and Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of Flood Damages in Balochistan Sector Irrigation and Power at a cost of Rs 5 billion and an expanded program on Immunization worth Rs 25 billion.