The federal government on Thursday cleared two mega projects for constructing an information technology house in Karachi and improving health facilities at district level in Sindh to effectively respond to the Covid-19 health crisis.
The Central Development Working Party (CDWP) meeting, presided over by Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Mohammad Jehanzeb Khan, cleared a development project with a cumulative estimated cost of Rs3.5 billion and recommended two projects worth Rs52 billion to the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) for further consideration.
Projects related to health and IT were presented in the meeting.
A project namely ‘establishment of IT Park Karachi’ worth Rs31.2 billion was recommended to the ECNEC for further approval.
The project envisages developing a competitive knowledge-based economy through value addition, innovation, and technology adoption as delineated from time to time in various documents such as Pakistan Vision 2025, Digital Pakistan Policy (2018), and Telecommunication Policy (2015).
While discussing the IT project, the Planning Commission deputy chairman said that technology has become very pertinent for economic development. “It offers a powerful competitive advantage which ultimately leads to job creation with a strong impact on the economy.”
He directed the forum to make a special purpose vehicle to run this project in a company mode. “World-class consultants should be hired to implement the project’s state-of-the-art building and international standards must be ensured in its construction.”
He emphasised on designing time-bound activities and ensuring timely completion of the project.
A project related to health presented by the Sindh government in the meeting namely ‘Covid-19 Response and other Natural Climes Control Programme’ worth Rs20.8 billion was also recommended to the ECNEC for approval.
Read more: CDWP approves two projects
The project envisages strengthening the public health system to deal with the immediate effects of infectious diseases.
The scope of the project includes 20-bedded ICU, 30-bedded HDU, six DHQs, four MED, 20-bedded Covid ward, 23 THQs, upgradation of six DHQs, and 10 other general hospitals in Karachi, Hyderabad, and Shaadpure Institute of Medical Science, and installation of 13 oxygen generation plants at various hospitals.
The forum directed that the vehicles and administrative costs will be met by the provincial government.
The CDWP approved a project of PAEC for a Cancer Hospital in Muzafarabad worth Rs3.4 billion.