MULTAN: Federal Minister for Communication Hafiz Abdul Karim has said the day is not far when far-off cities, including Peshawar and Lahore will be connected with Karachi and Gwadar through motorway.
He said this while speaking to journalists at NHA Complex in Multan on Friday.
He said that 13 motorway projects worth Rs1.3 trillion were under execution in different parts of the country.
These projects, he said, would be completed during the next two years, taking the overall length of motorway network in the country to around 2,400 kilometres.
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He said that Hazara Motorway (E-35), Lyari Expressway (32 km), Karachi-Hyderabad Motorway (136 km) and Rathodero-Khuzdar Motorway (M-8) would be completed this year.
Similarly, a number of other important projects, including Gojra-Shorkot (62 km), Shorkot-Khanewal (65 km), Lahore-Abdulhakim Motorway (230 km) and Dera Ismail Khan-Hakla Section of Western Corridor (285 km), Lahore Eastern Bypass (16 km) and Chakdara-Kalam Highway would be completed in 2018.
Similarly, Havelian-Mansera (39 km) and two sections of Multan-Sukkur Motorway would be completed before June 2018. The minister maintained three more projects namely Naukundi-Mushkel-Panjgur (90 km), Gilgit-Shindor-Chitral (364 km) and Mirpur-Muzaffarabad-Mansehra (228 km) would be added to CPEC in coming JCC meeting.
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Hafiz Abdul Karim said that for the first time in country’s history, highway projects around Rs350 billion were awarded on Built-Operate-Transfer basis through active participation of the private sector. This included Sukkur-Hyderabad Motorway (M-6), Karachi-Hyderabad Motorway and up gradation of Islamabad-Lahore Motorway. He pointed out that earnings from these projects were expected to cross over Rs300 billion.
The Multan-Lahore Motorway would be fully functional and open for routine public for traffic in April next year as the government had ordered early completion of the project.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 23rd, 2017.
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