The projects would generate economic activity, create employment and reduce poverty



Sep 16 - 22, 2002



The Executive Committee of National Economic Council (ECNEC), in a meeting held in Islamabad last week approved 22 development projects involving a total expenditure of Rs.70.3 billion out of which 12 are homegrown to be funded entirely through domestic resources without any foreign aid component.

The Finance Minister Mr. Shaukat Aziz who presided over the ECNEC session told waiting newsmen after the meeting that the highest allocation of Rs.52.8 billion had been made for the hydro electricity and irrigation sector followed by education (Rs.8.1 billion) and communication (Rs.7.2 billion). In addition, Rs.857 million for judicial reforms, Rs.615, million for social, Rs.366 million for industries and Rs.355 million for health sectors were also approved. "The projects would generate economic activity, create employment, reduce poverty, increase literacy rate and improve capacity building," claimed the Finance Minister. The water sector projects would help reduce dependence on thermal electricity generation and would improve social and physical infrastructure.

The project-wise break-up of the projects is as follows:

*The meeting approved establishment of Karachi Institute of Radio Therapy and nuclear medicine at an estimated cost of Rs.355.40 million with foreign exchange component of Rs.162 million. To be completed in 24 months, the project would improve facilities for diagnosis and treatment of cancer and malignant disorders. It would, during the projection implementation, generate employment for 300 skilled and unskilled workers. Upon being operational, it would employ 104 persons.

*ECNEC approved Rs.219.615 million to complete development of Public Park in Rawalpindi. The project will be transferred from CDA to Punjab Government for ongoing operation.

*The meeting approved Rs.3600 million 'Tawana Pakistan' School Nutrition Packages for girls. The project would cover 28 districts for a period of 54 months. Community based project would provide nutrition package for school girls between the age of 5 to 12 in the poorest districts to improve their health and to encourage enrolment in the girls schools.

*ECNEC approved Rs.395.708 million Pakistan Integrated Household Survey (PIHS) Phase-IV Programme. It would provide database on basic education, primary health, population welfare, water supply and sanitation and poverty and nutrition. The survey would include 115000 households for preparation of poverty profile in Pakistan on district level to meeting the data base requirement of devolution plan of the government. The project will be completed in 78 months.

*The meeting approved President's Programme for Rehabilitation and optimum utilization of existing facilities in elementary education. The Rs.2 billion project is a part of sizeable education sector reforms (ESR) programme, under which rehabilitation of existing facilities and capacity building in elementary education will be carried out. The programme will adopt area based approach to take most disadvantaged/ underserved districts to reduce disparities. It envisages increasing enrolment by 15 per cent of boys and 10 per cent of girls while at elementary level: it will increase by 5 per cent of boys and 3 per cent of girls. It would also improved institutional management through training programmes for skill management committees and parent/ teachers association Rs.1.574 billion-education sector reforms (ESR) package 2001-2004 was approved by ECNEC. Total cost of the project is around Rs.55.5 billion.

*The ESR package envisages improvement of quality and relevance to education at all levels and to market requirements. It plans to increase literacy rate to around 60 per cent, gross participation rate 100% at primary level, 55 per cent at elementary level, 40 per cent and secondary level education, 5 per cent at higher education level. Through this package gender disparity will be reduced at primary and elementary level education by ten per cent annually.

*ECNEC approved Rs.7035.128 million with foreign exchange components of Rs.2638.12 million Golan Gol Hydro Electric Power Project situated at remote area of Chitral, the project would produce 106 megawatt of electricity.

*Allai Khawar Hydro Electric Project costing Rs.8577.824 million with foreign exchange component of Rs.3453.54 million was approved. To be constructed on a tributary of Indus River in Kohistan District of NWFP, the project would produce 121-megawatt hydroelectric power. It would be completed in 48 months by June 2006. The project is part of WAPDA's vision 2025.

*The meeting approved Duber Khawar Hydro Electric Project with an estimated cost of Rs.9754.26 million with forein exchange component of Rs. 4147.51 million. It would be constructed on tributary of Indus River near Pattan in NWFP and produce 130-megawatt hydroelectric power.

*ECNEC approved Khan Khawar Hydro Electric Power Project at an estimated cost of Rs.5362.705 million with foreign exchange component of Rs.4147.51 million. It would be constructed on tributary of Indus River near Pattan in NWFP and produce 130-megawatt hydroelectric power.

*ECNEC approved Khan Khawar Hydro Electric Power Project at an estimated cost of Rs.5362.705 million with foreign exchange component of Rs.2644.98 million. It will be constructed on a tributary of Indus River at Swat, NWFP and produce 72-megawatt hydroelectric power.

*Meeting approved construction of Satpara Dam costing Rs.2090.431 million including foreign exchange component of Rs.195.786 million. The project would raise crop production and develop hydroelectric power to satisfy domestic, industrial and public quarter demand of Skardu and nearby villages. It will be 518.16 metre long and 34.44 metre high an earth-filled structure to store about 45400 acre-feet water. Around 19920 acres of land will irrigate annually by it.

*ECNEC approved 81 megawatt Malakand-III Hydro Power Project at the cost of Rs.6397.55 million with foreign exchange component of Rs.1923.2 million. To be constructed at Dhargai in Malakand agency on Upper Swat Canal of Swat River, the project would be completed in 48 months.

*The Jinnah Hydro Electric Power Project with capacity of 96 megawatt on Jinnah Barrage on Indus in Punjab at a cost of Rs.13546.8 million with foreign exchange component of Rs.6608.221 million was also approved.

*The ECNEC approved Rs.419.207 million Judicial and Administration Complex to be constructed in Islamabad. The complex will house officers of district judges, additional district judges, civil judges, nazims, Chief Commissioner, Deputy Commissioner and Police Officers.

*Meeting approved establishment of National University of Science and Technology (NUST) Headquarters and Hi-Tech Post Graduate Science and Technology Institutes at Islamabad. The project would cost Rs. 956.543 million. The Institutes would carry out MS and PhD Programmes. Total intake would be 169 students (140MS and PhDs) with peak strength of 367 students (280 MS and 87PhDs).

*Procurement of Dredger for Port Qasim Authority with foreign exchange component of Rs.1800 million was also approved. The Dredger with hopper capacity of 6000 cubic metres would undertake annually maintenance dredging of 2.5 million cubic metres which would subsequently increase to 3.28 cubic metres annually following capital dredging of 29.5 million cubic metres in relation to the deepening of navigational channel at Port Qasim to achieve 16.1/ 13.5 metres depth in the approach/ inner channel for safe navigation of 75000 DWT vessels.

*ECNEC approved doubling of railway track from Lodhran to Khanewal at a cost of Rs.3297.52 million including foreign exchange component of Rs.1146.7 million. It would, substantially increase smooth traffic of trains on this section. The project would be implemented in phases over three years.

*The meeting approved rehabilitation of 450 passenger coaches, including fitment of air brakes and conversion into 40 AC lower coaches in ten power vans with an estimated cost of Rs.2145 million with foreign exchange component of Rs.479.228 million. The project envisages improvement in the passenger railway traffic and use of local subcontractors to supply engineering part and equipment.

*ECNEC approved Rs.336 million upgradation of Plastic Technology Centre (PTC) at Karachi. It would provide technological back-up support to the industries, particularly small and medium enterprises in production of Tooling Equipment, dissemination of latest technological know-how and advanced technology to the plastic industry. It would also train engineers, managers, supervisors, technicians and workers to improve their capabilities/ skills for better performance. The project is funded by Japanese grant for assistance in industrial and technical skills and was agreed to during President Musharraf's recent visit to Japan.

*Meeting approved Rs.437.96 million technical assistance for Access to Justice programme (Phase-I) for capacity building of key institutions that provide both judicial and non-judicial services.

The meeting also noted quarterly performance of central and provincial DWPs. The new projects approved are part of public sector development programme and will generate economic activity. With better fiscal and resource position Government is undertaking more development projects to stimulate economic activity, create jobs, reduce poverty and improve infrastructure, social services and education and health sectors.

The meeting, among other, was attended by Minister of Communications, Agriculture, Labour, President's Advisor on Agriculture, Secretary General Finance, Deputy Chairman Planning Commission and Provincial Finance Minister and Federal and Provincial Secretaries.