In a significant development towards the construction of Diamer Bhasha Dam, the Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) on Wednesday issued the Request for Proposals (RFP) to three pre-qualified consortiums for consultancy services for important works on the project.
The consortiums, led by Aecom of the US, Mott Mac Donald Limited of the UK and Lahmeyer of Germany, have been asked to submit their proposals for construction supervision and contract administration.
Diamer Bhasha Dam is part of a water storage development and least-cost energy generation plan. It is a multi-purpose project aimed at storing water for agriculture, mitigating floods and generating low-cost hydroelectric power.
After completion, the project will store 8.1 million acre feet of water and generate 4,500 megawatts of electricity, contributing about 20 billion units of low-cost electricity annually to the national grid.
Owing to its immense importance for socio-economic development in the country, the federal government is working on the Diamer Bhasha Dam as a priority project.
For construction of the dam, acquisition of land, development of infrastructure in the project area and implementation of social action plan are continuing simultaneously through funds provided by the government. The acquisition of land is in progress through the governments of Gilgit-Baltistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.
Work on 15 contracts for constructing Wapda offices, colonies, contractors’ camps, roads and other infrastructure in the project area is progressing satisfactorily, Wapda says in a press release.
Special emphasis is being laid on the resettlement action plan, prepared in accordance with international safeguard policies and guidelines. This plan includes construction of model villages for the displaced and other steps leading to socio-economic development of the local populace.
In addition, special arrangements are being made to preserve pre-historic rock carvings and local cultural heritage with the help of international experts.
The government and Wapda are working on a number of options to make financial arrangements for construction of the multi-billion-dollar dam.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 18th, 2013.
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