ECNEC meeting was historic in the sense that during
its day-long deliberations it approved 32 projects
Mar 11 - 17, 2002
The last Thursday meeting of the Executive
Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) was historic in the
sense that during its day long deliberations it approved 32 projects
involving a massive expenditure of Rs. 229 billion.
In all 34 projects were submitted to the ECNEC and
only two were deferred till the next meeting for want of some vital
information. The 32 included some which were under consideration for a
considerable long time. It has also been decided that henceforth the
Planning Commission will monitor the implementation of the approved
projects for which it will enhance its monitoring and enforcement
capacity both in terms of skill and manpower.
Talking to the newsmen after the meeting, Deputy
Chairman Planning Commission, Dr. Shahid Amjad Chaudhry, said that the
government managed to fill financing gap to complete the development
projects. There is no problem of financing and we have managed
resources for the first phase of these projects. The thirty two
projects approved included revised scheme for construction of Gawadar
Deep Sea Port (phase 1) with the cost of Rs.14,905 billion including a
foreign exchange component of Rs. 8,674 billion.
The ECNEC also approved phase two of water
distribution networks for Rawalpindi Cantonment from Khanpur source
costing Rs.510 million and the project would be completed in 21
months. It would provide 1948 MGD water to Rawalpindi Cantonment and
the 2/3 cost of the project Rs.340 million would be funded by the
federal government while the remaining cost would be borne by the
The meeting approved Rs.302.720 million for
improvement of nutrition through primary health care under SAP-11. It
also approved Rs.367.500 million for acquiring of 150 acres land to
relocate National University of Science and Technology (NUST) in H- 12
The meeting approved Rs.684.704 million for
phase-11 Third World Center for Science and Technology to be
established at Karachi University. The cost includes IDB credit of
Rs.585 million. The ECNEC also approved Rs.162 million for foreign
exchange component revised technical assistance project for
modernization of custom administration.
The meeting approved construction of Pindi
Bhattian-Faisalabad Motorway (M-3) project with total cost of
Rs.5021.5 million and it is going to be completed in two years. The
government has allocated Rs.1000 million in PSDP of 2001-02. Out of
total cost of Rs. 5021.5 million, an amount of Rs.2078 million has
already been spent on the project.
The ECNEC approved Rs.782,344 million for
rehabilitation of existing carriageway of Baberlo-Ubauro Section of
National Highway N-5 located in Upper Sindh. The meeting approved
Rs.5861 million multi purpose Mirani Dam Project which includes
Rs.2297 million foreign exchange component.
The dam is going to be completed in four years and
it will provide 114462 acre feet water to the cultivable command area
of about 33200 acres. It would benefit around 50,000 people of more
than 9400 families.
The meeting also approved Dakhni Expansion Project
at an estimated cost of Rs.1056.082 million with foreign exchange
component of Rs.630.35-2 million. To improve Railway services the
meeting approved Rs.11.192 billion including foreign exchange
component of Rs.4.485 billion, phase and rehabilitation program under
the project 1720 track kilometers rails, 49 track kilometers renewal
and 200 track kilometers of sleeper renewal will be done from
2001-2006. The project will be financed under PSDP with Islamic
Development Bank, suppliers credit and Austrian credit.
Under the PSDP for Railway related projects, the
government has allocated Rs.1654 million, including a foreign exchange
component of Rs.1143 million in current financial year. As a part of
rehabilitation plan for Pakistan Railway, the ECNEC approved revised
procurement manufacture of 175 hew design passenger coaches including
foreign exchange component of Rs.5455.6 million. The total Railway
rehabilitation plan would cost Rs.40.086 billion. Out of this 135
coaches will be manufactured in the carriage factory Islamabad and 40
coaches will be imported.
To improve living condition of 0.40 million urban
population in 24 towns of NWFP and the meeting approved Rs.1650
million. It will have foreign exchange component of Rs.192.50 million
and the ADB has agreed to provide a loan of US$ 21 million. NWFP
government would arrange Rs.396 million through PSDP and district
government would contribute Rs.99 million.
To attract and retain about 96,000 girls of 5-9
years and 2400 female teachers in 1200 girls primary schools of Swat,
Bunair, Dir, Batagram, Mansehra, and Kohistan district, the ECNEC
approved Rs.432.76 million-phase two promotion of primary education in
The meeting approved Rs.741.700 million for
improving sewage and drainage system of Lahore. The cost includes
Japanese grant of Rs.648 million and it would be completed in three
To alleviate the degraded environmental condition
in Kasur town, the meeting approved Rs.497.245 million revised Kasur
Tannery Pollution Control Project. The project will be completed in
three years and the cost will be neared by UNDP 24 per cent,
government of Pakistan 41 per cent, Punjab 16 per cent, EPB 15 per
cent and Tannery Association 4 per cent.
For introducing Machine Readable Passports, Macing
Readable Visas and Automatic Border Control with latest technology in
integrated system, the meeting approved Rs.2830.925 million project
with foreign exchange component of Rs.1348.180 million.
The ECNEC also approved Rs.1443.51 million to
improve transport, communication and investigation techniques of
police. Under the project, 30-1300 cc diesel cars, 319-1000 cc petrol
cars, 135 small four wheel drive jeep, 1308 single cabin pick ups,
2117 motor cycles and four buses will be purchased in one year. The
meeting approved second revised PC-I for construction of National
Police Academy in H-11 Sector of Islamabad at the cost of Rs.362.272
The ECNEC approved Rs.33441.764 million for third
revised PC-1 of left Bank outfall drainage and National Refinery.
The meeting approved Rs.558.310 million NWFP
sectorial area development project to improve quality of life in
far-flung areas. The United States would provide Rs.529.135 million
while the government of Pakistan would contribute Rs.29.175 million
and the project would be completed in five years.
The ECNEC also approved Rs.4136.18 million for
phase-1 Urban Water Supply and Sanitation Project Rawalpindi. The
meeting also approved construction of 97 kilometer Turbat Mand Road at
the cost of Rs.391.71 million, construction of road from Umerkot to
Chachro with the cost of Rs.208.805 million, widening of National
Highway (N-50) from D.I. Khan to Mughal Kot with cost of Rs.1903.21
million and for widening of N-70 from KM Qilla Saifullah to Bestwata
with cost of Rs.2934.42 million.
The controversial Thal Flood Water Canal project
was approved by the (ECNEC), following a heated bate between the
officials of Sindh and the Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda)
during the arguments between Wapda and Sindh officials it transpired
that the authority had already started work on the project without the
approval of the competent authority, an official present at the
Wapda official, explaining the authority's point of
view, recalled that the project had been inaugurated by President Gen
Pervez Musharraf on August 17, soon after unfolding his economic
development plan. Wapda official said the authority had, already
completed work on a stretch of five kilometres and had already spent
substantial amount of funds.
The Sindh government maintained that Wapda should
have waited for an approval by the competent authority before starting
work on the project. It pointed out that the opinion of the Indus
River System Authority (Irsa) had not been sought by the Planning
Commission which was mandatory in the project concerning irrigation,
under a decision of the federal government.