The need for better project management, tracking and implementation so as to get more results


May 05 - 18, 2003




The executive committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC), in its meeting on Wednesday last, approved 25 projects involving a total expenditure of over Rs.68.5 billion with a foreign exchange component of over Rs.20 billion.

The sector wise break up of the projects is: irrigation Rs.3363.727 million, water supply Rs.7486.713 million, communications Rs.36837.814 million, rural development Rs.9308.06 million, health Rs.4785.741 million, education Rs.5880 million technical education Rs.284 million and science and technology Rs.299.200 million.

The ECNEC meeting which was presided over by the Finance Minister Shaukat Aziz, was informed that the Provincial Development Working Parties of Punjab, Sindh, NWFP and Balochistan had also approved 289 development schemes during July-March of the current fiscal year involving a total expenditure of over Rs.81 billion. The Finance Minister emphasised the need for creating local ownership of the development schemes at the district, provincial and federal level so that the development projects reflected aspirations of the people. He said that these projects also reflected better availability of domestic resources and increased donor flow. He further stated that increased development activities could have favourable impact on growth, development, job-creation and overall economic activity. The ECNEC member also highlighted the need for better project management, tracking and implementation so as to get more results from the development efforts.

The Finance Minister said that the government was focusing on development work in public sector and the federal government has increased allocation for Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) from Rs.134 billion to Rs.150 billion in the current fiscal. It was giving priority to such projects which were labour intensive and offered maximum number of jobs. He claimed that all the approved project are aimed at improving social and physical infrastructure, mostly in rural areas to create hope and opportunity for the people and improve their standard of living. Most of the projects located in Sindh and Balochistan reaffirm governments resolve to accelerate development in these hitherto neglected provinces and create job opportunities for the people of these area.

The main schemes approved by the ECNEC followsó

To make Gwadar seaport a real hub of industrial and economic activity and attractive for Central Asian States and Afghanistan, ECNEC approved upgradation of Gwadar International Airport. To be constructed at the cost of Rs.480.125 million, the new airport would facilitate landing of Airbus A-300 and B4 aircrafts. To be completed in two phases. The new airport would confirm to the international standards, providing a quality air link between Gwadar and the world and facilitate businessmen and industrialists.

The meeting approved Rs.14419 million Sindh Road Sector Development Programme. Under this programme, 166-KM of provincial highways and 1200-KM of rural access roads will be improved. To be completed in 60 months, the project will improve physical infrastructure of Sindh, generate employment opportunities and trigger economic development.

Decentralised Elementary Education Project (DEEP) costing Rs. 5880 million including ADB loan of Rs. 4538.124 million envisages improving access and quality at elementary level education, with emphasis on promotion of girls education in rural areas and urban slums of Sindh province. When implemented, the participation rate at elementary education will increase from existing 38 per cent to 55 per cent.



The project would attract and retain girls of rural areas in elementary education. Stipends will be provided to girls to increase participation rate at secondary/higher secondary level and to ensure availability of female trained teacher in rural areas of Sindh. The project aims at upgradation of 1200 existing primary schools (65 per cent for girls) to elementary schools, introduction of pre-primary education in 1000 primary schools, life skills, buildings for 200 shelterless primary schools with public-private partnership and conversion of two schools in each tehsil of the province as English medium schools.

Jointly sponsored by Health Department, Government of Sindh and Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI) Support for Extended Programme of Immunisation in Sindh costing Rs.591.476 million including foreign exchange component of Rs.518.756 million would improve access to sustainable immunisation service, expand the use of cost-effective vaccines, introduced new vaccines, encourage research and development efforts and make immunisation coverage in integral part of health systems. To be implemented in 60 months, the project would reduce child death, cover more than 80 per cent population in each district, control polio, eliminate neo-natal tetanus and control measles. Two similar projects with foreign support costing Rs267.300 million and Rs.940.047 million was approved for Federally Administered Northern Areas.

Rs273.037 million Roll Back Malaria Control Programme approved by ECNEC would help in early detection and treatment of malaria cases, evolve sustainable prevention strategies and focus on research to contain the disease.

Similarly, Rs.2858.400 million enhanced HIV/AIDS Control Programme with foreign exchange component of Rs.656.400 million would ensure an effective, coordinated and sustainable multi-sectoral response to HIV/AIDS in Pakistan. The programme to be implemented in 60 months will reduce risk of HIV infection, expand the knowledge base and improve the quality of life for people living with HIV/AIDS through the provision of quality care and support.

ECNEC approved Rs.500 million setting up of Sindh Rural Support Organisation (SRSO) for poverty alleviation and participatory development in Jacobabad, Shikarpur, Ghotki Khairpur and Tharparker districts of Sindh. The SRSO will work for capacity building and fostering productive linkages with the line department to generate social sector development, including health, education, family planning, sanitation and clean drinking water. It would also focus on income generation through improved agriculture.

The meeting approved Rs.1572 million Technical Assistance Programme for Local Government Performance Enhancement with foreign exchange component of Rs.15,334 million to enable federal government to bear the revenue costs of shifting substantial fiscal resources on sustainable basis to the provinces and local governments, empowering local governments and citizens, promoting social development and accelerating decentralisation.

Rs.3754.06 million Sindh Rural Development Project with foreign exchange component of Rs.2877.80 million was approved to improve governance and legal support, enhance social process at community level, and improve rural livelihood and upgrading rural infrastructures.

To add about 50,000 sq km seabed area to the National Maritime Jurisdiction in addition to the existing 240,000 sq km for exploiting underwater resources, the meeting approved survey for extension of continental shelf of Pakistan from 200 nautical miles to 350 nautical miles. To implemented in 36 months, the project would cost Rs.299.200 million including foreign exchange component of Rs.260.700 million.

Approval was accorded to Rs.5080.737 million Lyari Express way, Karachi. A separate amount of Rs.2871.652 was also approved for re-settlement of affectees as a result of building the Expressway.

To provide drinking water in remote rural areas/villages of Balochistan by treating aline/brackish water through solar Powered Drinking Water Supply Project for Remote Villages in Balochistan. ECNEC also approved Rs.3482 million Fordwah Eastern Sadiqia Remaining Surface Training Project to eliminate water logging and salinity in the area for optimum agricultural development. When implemented, it would benefit 0.321 million acres of cultivated land.

Rs.2306.713 million homegrown project to upgrade Kinjhar Lake System to assure water supply for Karachi was also approved. The project envisages increasing discharge of KB feeder from 9100 cusecs to 9800 cusecs through remodeling, raising Kinjhar Lake embankment by 3.2 feet and construction of 4000 feet long spill way.

To tap around 10 MAF water from Mithawan hill torrents and to control floods, ECNEC approved Rs.364.268 million for the Management of Mithawan hill torrents in D.G. Khan Districts with foreign exchange component of Rs.162 million.

The PAT Feeder Command Area Development Project costing Rs.1068.817 million, including foreign exchange component of Rs.53.243 million was approved to provide On-Farm Water Management, Agriculture and Agriculture Extension and Community Organisation Support.

For rehabilitation of Taunsa Barrage Irrigation System, an amount of Rs.1363.472 million including foreign exchange component of Rs.323.760 million was approved. The objective of the project is to eliminate mechanical problems of main barrage, rehabilitation of gates and allied equipments including 11 under sluice gates and 20 weir gates.

The meeting approved Rs.567.170 million Chagai Water Management and Agricultural Development Project with foreign exchange components of Rs.433.407 million. The project would increase crop production in 0.3 million acres of land by providing sustainable irrigation water supply. The objective will be to achieve through exploitation of surface and ground water sources, betterment on farm water management and improve agronomic practices. The scope of project includes improvement of 325 water courses, construction of 265 water storage tanks, installation of trickle irrigation system, provision of bubblers/rain guns and installation of 50 tubewells.

To address inadequacies in primary and secondary maternal health care services, create gender equity, provide health care to women in rural areas of 20 districts in four provinces and to institutionalise the district health management team, the meeting approved Rs.795.528 million including foreign exchange component of Rs.636.422 million Women Health Project.

Punjab Road Sector Development Project costing Rs.13,328 million including foreign exchange component of Rs.6,336 million was also approved to rehabilitate 303 km of rural access roads in Pubjab. The project would employ 5,000 unskilled workers, 2,000 skilled workers, 200 junior engineers and 100 senior engineers. For operations, 700 unskilled workers, 50 skilled, 25 junior engineers will be engaged