Islamabad - The National Highway Authority has said that at present development projects of worth Rs1400 billion are under execution in different parts of the country.

The participants of 107th National Management Course (NMC) visited the NHA head office on Tuesday where they were given a detailed briefing about the organisation and its administrative and financial affairs as well as an overview of the development projects currently under-construction in different parts of the country.

Welcoming the guests, the Member Administration Ali Sher Mahsud, gave a detailed account of the organization, its history and the role as country’s premier body regarding construction and maintenance of national highways, motorways, expressways and strategic roads. He informed the visitors that development projects worth Rs1400 billion were under execution all across Pakistan including the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Upon completion, the historic road connectivity, stretching from the Chinese border at Khunjerab to the Port of Gwadar, will usher Pakistan in a new era of economic development and prosperity.

He said the most vital aspect of this unprecedented road development activity was its focus on the development of less developed areas in the smaller provinces which would indeed boost the economic prospects of the people and strengthen the federation. He said the improved connectivity will not only reduce distances but also save travel time much to the comfort of commuters.

He said early completion of 2463 km long western route of CPEC was a top priority which would be completed by the end of 2018. It would connect Khujerab to Gwadar through Hakla, D-I-Khan, Zhob and Quetta.

He said after the completion in next two of 9 motorway projects currently under construction, the total motorway length in Pakistan will reach up to 2400 km.

He also informed that for the first time in country’s history, substantial private sector investment was encouraged towards highway schemes and projects worth over Rs. 350 billion were awarded on BOT (Built -Operate -Transfer) basis. This included Karachi-Hyderabad Motorway (M9), Lahore-Sialkot Motorway and soon to be started Sukkur-Hyderabad Motorway.

He said due to transparency in the procurement process, NHA had managed to save over Rs. 300 billion to the national exchequer, a fact also acknowledged by the Auditor General of Pakistan in its Annual Audit Report for the year 2016-17. Naeem Aslam, Dean, National Management College, in his remarks, appreciated NHA’s role in providing a wide and safe network of world-class highways and motorways despite so many challenges and termed it as a source of pride for the country.