ISLAMABAD: The lowering of water level of the artificial Attabad Lake will cost Rs660 million, concluded a meeting presided by the finance minister on Monday.
Abdul Hafeez Shaikh held a meeting with Frontier Works Organization (FWO) and the National Highway Authority (NHA) to discuss the progress of two projects regarding Attabad Lake as well as the re-alignment of different sections of Karakorum Highway (KKH).
The minister stressed the timely completion of the projects and discussed different financial matters faced by FWO, NHA and other departments concerned regarding the projects.
A massive landslide occurred on July 4 last year near the Attabad village in Hunza Valley, causing a heavy loss of life and property. The landslide blocked River Hunza, which resulted in the formation of a lake, besides inundating about a two-kilometre long stretch of KKH.
The Attabad Lake and the damaged road network of KKH have proven to be a major obstacle for the trade between Pakistan and China. The completion of the two projects is key to utilising the existing trade and energy potential of Gilgit-Baltistan.
The meeting comes just days after President Asif Ali Zardari held a meeting and ordered to expedite the realignment of the damaged portion of KKH, for which funds had been provided by China.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 9th, 2011.