The FINANCIAL — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of Pakistan on March 14 signed a $140 million loan to improve the provincial roads in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) in the northwestern region of Pakistan.
The loan agreement was signed by Xiaohong Yang, ADB Country Director for Pakistan, and Syed Ghazanfar Abbas Jilani, Secretary of the Economic Affairs Division (EAD), at a ceremony in Islamabad. Muhammad Shahab Khattak, Secretary for the Communication and Works Department, and Ahmed Nabi Sultan, Managing Director of the Pakhtunkhwa Highway Authority, signed the project agreement on behalf of the Government of KP, according to ADB.
“The project signed here today is a continuation of ADB support for upgrading Pakistan’s vital infrastructure to stimulate economic growth and job creation,” said Ms Yang. “ADB is looking forward to work very closely with the government to accelerate economic development by developing roads to improve mobility and connectivity, among others.”
The KP Provincial Roads Improvement Project will rehabilitate 8 key road sections with total length of 214 kilometers (km), equipped with a higher road safety and climate resilience standard to ensure uninterrupted flows of people and goods within the province, across the country, and beyond.
The $164 million project, with the Government of Pakistan contributing $24 million, is expected to be completed by the end of 2022. The project will also implement two pilot performance-based maintenance contracts covering about 104 km of roads. Under the operations and maintenance contracts, the role of a contractor will be changed from a project executor to a road asset manager. This will strengthen the role of the provincial highways department.