Some of the National Highway Authority’s critical road projects, including the western route under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and the Sukkur-Hyderabad Motorway, faced delays due to inconsistent policies and shortage of funds, according to official sources.
The National Highway Authority’s (NHA) megaprojects often run over budget due to conflicting policies, a lack of funds, incompetent contractors, and security reasons.
The construction of the western route and the Sukkur-Hyderabad Motorway, which are critical components of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and connect the Gwadar port with other parts of the country, did not follow the schedule during the first three years of the current government.
The delays in project completion were confirmed through the NHA mobile application (NHA-IS), which provides up-to-date information about work on CPEC and other road projects.
Hakla-D.I.Khan Motorway (CPEC) project was divided into five smaller sections and was due to be completed by the end of 2019. It is 285 kilometers long and part of the western route and was estimated to cost Rs. 145.50 billion, including Rs. 20 billion for land acquisition and utilities.
The construction of Hakla on M-I to Yarik D.I.Khan Motorway (CPEC) (Rehmani Khel to Kot Balian) Package-2B began in 2017 at an estimated cost of Rs. 17.223 billion. It was scheduled for completion by June 2019. However, only 82 percent physical and 91.02 percent progress has been achieved so far.
The construction of Hakla on M-I to Yarik D.I.Khan Motorway (CPEC) (Rehmani Khel to Kot Balian) Package-2A began in July 2017 at an estimated cost of Rs. 9.23 billion. It was scheduled for completion in June 2019, but only 80 percent physical and 67.35 percent financial progress has been achieved so far.
The construction of Hakla on M-I to Yarik D.I.Khan Motorway (CPEC) (Yarak – Rahmani Khel) Package-I began in September 2016 with an estimated cost of Rs. 12.758 billion and was scheduled to be completed by May 2019. However, the project has achieved only 85.37 percent physical and 71.33 percent financial progress so far.
For the Sukkur-Hyderabad Motorway project, an advertisement was posted on national and international print media on October 10, 2016, inviting an Expression of Interest (EoI) regarding the pre-qualification of firms. The NHA bid evaluation committee opened up the submission of technical proposals on February 14, 2017. After the finalization of technical evaluation, financial proposals of all the three bidders were opened on March 7, 2017, and the scheduled completion of the project was supposed to be in three years, at the cost of Rs. 175 billion. However, after assuming power, the incumbent government shelved Hyderabad-Sukkur Motorway (M-6) project.
The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec) has now approved the Hyderabad-Sukkur Motorway at a revised cost of Rs 191.47 billion. The 306km Hyderabad-Sukkur motorway will be constructed as a six-lane-divided, fenced motorway on a build, operate, and transfer (BOT) basis. Work on the projected is expected to be launched next year, officials added.
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