ISLAMABAD - Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani has promised to provide Rs 1.5 billion for early completion of Lowari Road Tunnel, whereas the government has allocated Rs 6.5 billion this year for construction projects of NHA in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Federal Minister for Communications Dr. Arbab Alamgir Khan stated this at a meeting chaired by him in the Ministry of Communications. The federal minister was briefed on the progress of NHA projects. He was told that National Highway Council recently reviewed the development portfolio of NHA for PSDP 2011-12 and approved province-wise distribution of funds. In the current budget 2011-12, Rs 8,782.36 million have been allocated by NHA for Balochistan which is 24.18 of the total PSDP allocation of NHA amounting to Rs 39,900.26 million. Likewise 38.50 per cent funds are allocated for Punjab, 16.68 per cent for Sindh, 16.17 per cent for KPK and 4.46 per cent for Gilgit-Baltistan. While emphasising the significance of homogenous development across the country the Minister said that equitable distribution of PSDP resources among all the provinces would go a long way in inter provincial harmony. Commenting on the slow pace of work on Lowari Tunnel, Minister said that Ministry is determined to timely complete it. He clarified that the delay in its construction has been only due to last years flood, law and order situation and shortage of funds. He told that devastating floods of moonson-2010, forced the government to divert some of the funds for rehabilitation of flood affectees and reconstruction of flood-affected areas. To accommodate flood related expenditure, the government imposed 50 per cent cut on PSDP 2010-11 including the share of NHA. The NHA received only Rs 18 billion out of its PSDP allocation. Consequently, NHA projects across Pakistan were impacted by the cut on PSDP due to which cash flow of the contractors got disturbed and progress on ground suffered. However, he added, we are committed to early completion of all projects. He said that NHA as per policy decision is according maximum attention to projects, which have achieved 60 per cent or more progress. The meeting was also attended by the Member National Assembly from Chitral Shahzada Mohy-ud-din, Federal Secretary Communications Anwar Ahmad Khan, Additional Secretary Amjad Nazeer, Chairman NHA Syed Muhammad Ali Gardezi, Member Construction Aurangzeb Khan, GM Lowari Tunnel Colonel (Retd) Salman Arshad, representatives of SAMBO and other high officials.