Funding for Naulong Dam being negotiated with ADB

Published: August 25, 2017
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PHOTO: REUTERS

PHOTO: REUTERS

LAHORE: Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) Chairman Muzammil Hussain reviewed progress on water projects at a meeting held in Quetta on Thursday.

Hussain assured meeting participants that Wapda was cognisant of Balochistan’s water requirements and making utmost efforts to utilise and store the province’s water resources in the shortest possible time. He listed Naulong, Hingol, Badinazai and Sukliji dams as the most recent projects taken up by Wapda.

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While briefing the chairman, Wapda Chief Engineer (West) said Naulong Dam was ready for construction with financing arrangements being negotiated with the Asian Development Bank through the Economic Affairs Division.

He added Hingol, Badinzai and Sukliji dams were in planning stages and their feasibility reports had been sent to the Planning Commission for approval. The issue of handing over operational control of Mirani Dam to the government of Balochistan also came up for discussion during the meeting. Mirani Dam was completed by Wapda about 10 years ago.

The Wapda chairman also visited Quetta Electric Supply Company (Qesco) and Wapda Hospital, Quetta.

During the trip to Qesco headquarters, the chairman was briefed by the Qesco chief engineer (planning) about the company’s performance, its power system, development schemes and projects for improvement of the power distribution system across the province.

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The chairman was told that subsidies on agriculture tube wells in Balochistan had been withdrawn in December 2016. Since then, the arrears payable by the agriculture tube well owners have swelled to Rs31 billion, causing an adverse impact on the financial health of Qesco.

Later, during his visit to the Wapda Hospital, Hussain observed the healthcare facilities being provided to Wapda employees and power companies including Qesco, National Transmission and Despatch Company (NTDC) and Generation Company (Genco)-II.

Speaking on the occasion, the chairman said Wapda was committed to providing latest treatment facilities to Wapda and power sector employees through its own healthcare system which exists throughout the country.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 25th, 2017.

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