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NHA awards Rs9bn contract under CPEC

ISLAMABAD: The National Highway Authority (NHA) on Wednesday awarded a contract of over Rs9 billion for the fifth and last section of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor’s (CPEC) western route.

Under the contract, a road from Rehmani Khel to Kot Belian (package 2A of section five) will be constructed. The approved project forms an important section of the Hakla-D I Khan Motorway. The contract was awarded to the lowest evaluated bidder — a joint venture (JV) of construction firms SKB and KNK at their evaluated bid price of Rs9.2bn.

The contract was awarded in NHA’s executive board meeting presided over by the authority’s chairman Shahid Ashraf Tarar.

The western route of the CPEC has five different sections. Contracts for four sections have already been awarded. The fifth section has been bifurcated into three portions which include the construction of a bridge at River Indus and two road segments of 25 km each.

While a contract was awarded yesterday, the remaining will be awarded soon, after which construction work on the entire western route will begin. The project is scheduled to be completed by Dec 2018.

“One of the reasons that why the last section of western route has been bifurcated is that the NHA wanted to complete all sections simultaneously by Dec 2018,” NHA spokesman told Dawn.

He said work on all four sections of the western route has started while the fifth section has been split into three portions so that three different contractors could complete the work at fast pace.

Interestingly, the work on western route will be complete by Dec 2018 and the present government will complete its five year term in May 2018, therefore the credit of its completion might go to the new regime.

The western route has remained under severe criticism in the parliament since the opposition was of the view that the government was not serious in executing it and the entire emphasis was laid on the eastern route.

It is because of the opposition’s pressure, the two lane western route was converted into a four lane corridor.

Courtesy : Dawn News

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