RAWALPINDI: Decisive talks between the Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA) and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) for financing the construction of the Ring Road project are expected to be held next week, Aviation Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan said on Friday.
The talks are expected to be held when a delegation of AIIB arrives in Pakistan next week, Sarwar said talking to The Express Tribune.
RDA Chairman Tariq Murtaza and DG Ammara Khan and RDA officials are expected to lead the talks with the AIIB team to discuss funding for Ring Road project, said the minister, who had been elected from Rawalpindi during the 2018 general elections.
Project documents show that the Ring Road project is expected to cost Rs50 billion to build. Recently, Rawalpindi Commissioner Muhammad Mehmood had ordered to redesign the long-delayed thoroughfare.
The foundation stone of the 38-kilometre long Ring Road is expected to be laid in June. The project is expected to start from Rawat and end at the Thaliyan Interchange on the Islamabad-Lahore Motorway, Sarwar said.
As per the plan, industrial zones, technical institutions, universities and markets are expected to be set up on both sides of the road, he said, adding that RDA and the Punjab government will try to get the loan for the project approved from AIIB.
Funds released for land acquisition
The Punjab government has released some Rs200 million to the RDA to acquire land for completing the first phase of the Chahan Dam water supply scheme.
RDA has started redesigning the scheme, which is estimated to cost around Rs6.5 billion. According to the project design, large pipelines will be laid from the dam to two huge water tanks. which are expected to be built near the district judicial complex.
The dam can store around 15,700-acre feet of water which can then be supplied to parched union councils of Girja, Chak Jalal Din, Dhaman Syedan, Adyala, Kotha Kalan, Morgah, Lakkhan, Dhamyal, Mohri Gazan and Gulshan Abad.
According to documents seen by The Express Tribune, the government will need to procure at least 150 kanals of land to lay the pipelines. This is estimated to cost around Rs600 million. Out this, at least Rs200 million have been released to RDA for starting the land acquisition process.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 8th, 2020.
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