ISLAMABAD

Asian Development Bank (ADB)’s active public sector portfolio amounts stood at $5.51 billion as of 31st December 2014 in Pakistan, including 24 projects and one policy based lending.

There are 21 active technical assistance projects amounting to $20.15 million, including 10 TAs approved in 2014 for $8.6 million. Secretary, Economic Affairs Division, Muhammad Saleem Sethi, and Country Director ADB, Werner E. Liepach discussed these figures in Quarterly Portfolio Review meeting.

The meeting also discussed the on-going projects funded by Asian Development Bank (ADB). It was a joint 4-months review following the annual country portfolio review concluded in October 2014. The meeting was informed that in 2014, Economic Affairs Division and ADB signed 6 new projects, in addition to one policy based lending in energy sector amounting to $400 million. During the year, the yearly disbursement was more than $850 million, which is the highest achievement since 2009.

Further, in 2014 there was good progress overall in expanding the portfolio. From $4.49 billion in 2013 it escalated to $5.51 billion by the end of 2014, including resumption of policy based lending. With the anticipated new approvals of more than $1 billion per year as indicated in the Country Operations Business Plan (COBP) 2015-17 in the next three years, the meeting was apprised.

The meeting also noted that the energy sector now comprises half of the Pakistan’s active portfolio and is likely to grow in the coming years. The remaining portfolio consists of Transport (16pc), Agriculture and Natural Resources (13pc), Multi-sector (emergency project, 11pc), Health and Social Protection (7pc), and Water and other urban infrastructure and services (2pc). Asian Development Bank lauded the performance of National Highway Authority on completion of M-4 Faisalabad to Gojra, section one of the Faisalabad - Khanewal Highaway.

The Secretary, EAD highlighted the issues of energy projects with National Transmission & Desptach Company (NTDC) and Discos and called upon NTDC   to effiecently utilise $500 million for transmission projects before project closing date i.e. 31st December, 2016.   

Representatives of Ministry of Water & Power, Ministry of Communications, Benazir Income Support Programme, National Highway Authority and Discos along with Provincial Governments attended the meeting.