ISLAMABAD - The World Bank on Sunday informed the government that ten leading international contracting companies had expressed interest in bidding for the 4320 MW Dasu Hydro power project .

The revelation was made here in a high-level meeting chaired by the Finance Minister Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar.

The financing proposals for Dasu hydropower project were presented in a combined meeting of the officials of World Bank, Water and Power, Finance, Planning & Development and Economic Affairs Divisions.

The Dasu project will completed in two phases and in June 2014, the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had performed the groundbreaking ceremony for the first phase of 2160 MW. The total cost of the first phase is $4.30 billion.

In the meeting the Finance Minister was informed by World Bank officials that ten leading international contracting companies had expressed interest in bidding for the project.

The Finance Minister did not agree to the proposed timeline for award of project contract in June 2016 and directed that the timeline be reduced by three months so that the contract may be awarded in March 2016.

The meeting after detailed discussion and deliberation approved the financial package for the project.

Minister Dar on this occasion also reiterated the Government’s resolve to develop the energy sector and plug the demand and supply gap of electricity. He said keeping in view the energy needs of the country it was necessary that power projects were taken up on priority. He urged all officials engaged in the Dasu Hydropower Project to ensure project implementation in accordance with the timeline.

The meeting was attended by Finance Secretary, Dr. Waqar Masood Khan, Secretary Water & Power, Younus Dagha, Country Director World Bank, Patchamuthu Illangovan and other senior officials of Economic Affairs Division, Planning & Development Division and Wapda.