Bhasha Dam project to be included in CPEC framework: Ahsan Iqbal

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ISLAMABAD, Aug 19 (APP): Minister for Planning, Development and Reform, Prof. Ahsan Iqbal Friday said Diamir Bhasha Dam project would be included in China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

“Negotiations for including the project in the CPEC
framework have already been started with China,” he said while talking to media at Parliament House.

The minister said that Pakistan required $14 billion
for Diamir Bhasha dam and $7 billion were needed initially to continue the project, which would be pivotal to secure the economic future of the country.

The country requires unity in current prevailing
situation, at a time when operation Zarb e Azb was in final and successful stage while mega project CPEC was in pipeline.

He said that Pakistan’s Army special division
including the all security agencies of the country were working on the security of CPEC projects.

All the federating units and parliamentary leaders
have consensus on CPEC, which would be a game changer for country, he added.

Ahsan Iqbal said that country needs unity and
political stability and continuation of policies for economic growth and prosperity. Currently, Pakistan is on the phase of economic takeoff, he added.

The government is committed to complete all the
mega projects including CPEC for which all resources would be provided, he added.

He said that terrorism and terrorist activities
would not affect the CPEC and other projects, which would be completed in time.

The Minister said that some road links on Western
route, to be completed in December 2016, provide connectivity to Balochistan province with other regions of the country.

It would bring prosperity in the province, he added.
Earlier, addressing the Senate Standing Committee
on Planning, Development and Reforms, the minister said certain reservations of stakeholders, political parties and provinces Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh, Balochistan and Punjab including Azad Jammu Kashmir and Gilgit Balochistan, have been removed.

The Senate Standing Committee meeting was chaired by
Chairman Senator Col.® Syed Tahir Hussain Mashhadi and Reforms in Parliament House on Friday.

He said that the whole country is unanimous that CPEC
is a symbol of economic development and prosperity which would promote connectivity and integration among the provinces.

He said that all projects in Gawadar would be completed
in 2018 including that would be initiated in 2016.

Gawadar Airport, hospital, vocational institute for
skill development project would be started in coming months and completed in 2018.

He said that Balochistan province needs building
capacity of local, however to overcome the manpower shortage, recruitment are made on merit basis.
In meeting, official of irrigation department from
Balochistan gave presentation on different ongoing small
hydro projects in the province and about the current working position.

Senator Sirajul Haq, Mufti Abdul Sattar, Karim
Ahmed Khawaja, Nawabzada Saifullah Magsi and official of
Ministry of Planning attended the meeting.