Pakistan, World Bank sign $787m loan agreement

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Tuesday signed a loan agreement worth $787 million with the World Bank to revamp water supply and sewerage system in the country.

Economic Affairs Division Secretary Noor Ahmed signed the loan agreements on behalf of Pakistan while the representatives of Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and National Transmission & Despatch Company (NTDC) signed the agreements for their respective projects. WB Country Director for Pakistan Patchamuthu Illangovan signed the agreements on behalf of World Bank.

Economic Affairs Minister Hammad Azhar was also present on the occasion.

The loan has been granted for projects related to urban mobility, urban management & service delivery, improved water and sewerage services, tourism and power sectors.

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As per details, an amount of $382 million would be spent on Karachi Mobility (Yellow Line) Project. The objective of the project is to improve mobility, accessibility and safety along the yellow line Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Corridor in Karachi. The project will help develop urban road infrastructure (Yellow Corridor), rehabilitate or reconstruct road infrastructure along the yellow corridor, and develop and operationalise a BRT system.

Meanwhile, $40 million has been earmarked for the Karachi Water and Sewerage Services Improvement (1st Phase) Project. The project aims to improve access to safe water services in Karachi and to increase Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KWSB)’s financial and operational performance.

Likewise, an amount of $230 million would be spent on Competitive and Livable City of Karachi Project. The objective of the project is to improve the performance of Karachi local councils and agencies in urban management, financing and service delivery; and to improve the business environment for private sector development in Karachi.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Integrated Tourism Development Project would receive funding of $70 million. The project would help improve tourism-enabling infrastructure, develop tourism assets, and strengthen management for sustainable tourism development in KP.

Moreover, the agreement also included additional financing of $65 million for Central Asia South Asia Electricity Transmission and Trade Project (CASA-1000). The objective of the ongoing project is to create suitable conditions for sustainable electricity trade of 1,300MW between Central Asian countries (Tajikistan and the Kyrgyz Republic) and South Asian countries (Pakistan 1,000MW, Afghanistan 300MW).

Speaking on the occasion, Economic Affairs Minister said that the signing of five projects worth $787 million indicates the World Bank’s resolve to support the development agenda of the incumbent government.

The World Bank country director, while appreciating the reforms initiatives of the government, committed to extending possible support and facilitation to the government to help put the economy back on track.

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