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KP eyes Chinese funding for Chashma irrigation project

PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government is looking to Chinese investors for funding the much-delayed Chashma Right Bank Canal irrigation project in DI Khan district.

The project is among several others to be highlighted during the investment road show to be held in China later this month.

Around 78 projects of 14 sectors and valuing billions of rupees will be presented during the event slated to take place on April 16 and 17 to attract Chinese investors.

The CRBC, a lift-cum-gravity project, will provide perennial irrigation discharge of 73.98 cumecs (cubic meter per second) to irrigate 115,846 hectares of land in DI Khan district.

Plan to be presented in coming China road show to attract investment

The project has seen persistent delays over past several years due to lack of funding. Though the project continued to appear in the federal Public Sector Development Programme for many years, allocations for it were nominal.

A project brief available with Dawn says work on the scheme will begin from Chashma barrage and feeder channel and that it will run parallel to the existing Chashma Right Bank Gravity Canal up to 59 kilometers where a pumping station will be installed.

The overall pumping capacity will be 71.72 cumecs of water and that it will be lifted to 19.50 meters for irrigating the land situated at higher elevation on the right side of existing CRBC Gravity Canal up to the border line of Punjab province.

The length of main canal will be 111.25 kilometers and the distributaries network 410 kilometers. Besides, 26 floods carrier channels will also be constructed having a total length of 306 kilometers.

The estimated cost of the project is said to be Rs119.6 billion, while it will be executed in around five years.

The project brief says the KP government can’t finance the project on its own due to shortage of funds and therefore, it is looking to donors for assistance to complete the project.

The details show that the ‘payback period’ of the project will be around eight years.

It says that the feasibility of the project has already been conducted and after completion it would increase agricultural produce in the area and also generate employment opportunities.

It says that the project provides an opportunity for the donor agencies/investors for investment and to recoup the capital investment with healthy profits.

It can be executed through preferably Public Private Partnership (BOOT/BOT) or any other mode mutually agreed by both the parties and this project is open for all the state-owned, state-supported and private entities.

KP will facilitate investors for interaction with relevant agencies and is committed to be the partner of investor by providing all basic infrastructures in execution of the project, it added. On Feb 25, 2016, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and federal governments had signed a memorandum of understanding to resolve several contentious issues, including the one about the CRBC project.

Under the agreement, the federal government is to provide 65 percent of the project’s funding, while the rest will come from the province’s own resources.

Courtesy : Dawn News

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