Pakistan to promote trade with CARs

ISLAMABAD— A massive road net work has been planned by Pakistan to promote international trade with Central Asian Republics (CARs) through Afghanistan by enhancing regional connectivity at a cost of Rs6.5 billion. Official sources said that the ministry of communications has been directed to undertake what was termed a 'massive construction programme’, which will also ensure swift movement of road traffic at Indus Highway. The ministry of communication has finalised a plan to improve and build 318.79 Km of road in various parts of three provinces.

By From A Correspondent

Published: Tue 9 Aug 2005, 10:22 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 4:13 PM

It would cover Sehwan, Ratodoer vie Larkana, Khairpur, Dadu in Sindh, Rajanpur, D.G.Khan in Punjab, D.I.Khan and Chashma Right Bank Canal in NWFP. The Central Development Working Party (CDWP) was to formally approve the project on Saturday but its meeting could not take place which would now be held on August 13. The project named as Indus-Highway (N-55), Phase 3, which was a missing link of phase 1 and 2 envisaging improvement of the existing road and the construction of additional carriageway in different sections.

The scope of the work included improvement/rehabilitation and construction at Larkana bypass and allied structures. The existing road would be widened to 7.3 meters with improved geometric thereby allowing for higher speed. According to the sector strategy, modernisation of highway maintenance system, rationalisation of maintenance budget, establishment of highway maintenance funds based on toll, weigh bridge proceeds and normal maintenance grant, priority to road rehabilitation projects and completion of the ongoing projects were also included the project. The Indus Highway (N-55) runs South - North on the west bank of the Indus River connecting Karachi in the South with Peshawar in the North having a total length of about 1388 Km via Kotri/Hyderabad. The three missing links of N-55, after completion will form part of the whole Indus Highway.

The facility after completion will provide an alternate link from Karachi to Peshawar in addition to the existing National Highway N-5 (1762 Km) from Karachi via Thatta- Kotri/Hyderabad to Peshawar and take away much of the traffic load from N-5. The proposed project will also provide a shorter route from Karachi to Peshawar as compared to N-5 by reducing an overall distance of more than 325 Km. The projected traffic for the next 27 years has been estimated by adopting 6per cent per annum growth rate in the initial years and gradually lowering it to 4per cent annually as per the project life.

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