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Friday, June 21, 2024  
15 Dhul-Hijjah 1445  

CM Murad, WB agree to accelerate Yellow Line BRT, property tax collection work

The chief minister says Yellow Line BRT is one of the important corridors of the city
Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah said that the 21-km Yellow Line BRT is one of the important corridors of the city. File photo
Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah said that the 21-km Yellow Line BRT is one of the important corridors of the city. File photo

KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and the World Bank Country Director Mr Najy Binhassaine along with their respective teams discussed the overall world bank portfolio, ongoing and in pipeline, and agreed to remove bottlenecks, if any, so that they could be completed in the larger interest of the people of the province.

The CM was assisted by provincial ministers, Dr Azra Fazal Pechuho, Manzoor Wassan, Mukesh Chalwa, Imtiaz Shaikh, Jam Khan Shoro, Murtaza Wahab, Rasool Bux Chandio, Chief Secretary Sohail Rajput and Chairman P&D Hassan Naqvi. The world bank delegation members were Manager Operation Gaillus Draugelis, Sector Leader Sustainable Development Mr Abedalrazq Khalil, Disaster Risk Management Specialist Bilal Khalid, Climate Specialists Ms Sana Ikram and Ahsan Tehsin and Executive Assistant Waleed Anwar.

Yellow Line:

The world bank is financing the yellow line BRT project under the Karachi Mobility Project of $382 million.

The chief minister, discussing the project, said that the 21-km Yellow Line BRT is one of the important corridors of the city. He added that the route started Dawood Chowrangi - Korangi Industrial Road to Jam Sadiq Bridge, to KPT Intersection to FTC Interchange, to Shahrah-e-Quaideen, Shahrah-e-Faisal to Kashmir Road Intersection.

On the world bank country chief’s suggestion, the chief minister directed the Transport department to hire staff to assist in procurement. It was agreed that a full-fledged Project Director would be appointed along with procurement and contract management specialists within a month. After discussion, both the parties- Sindh govt and world bank, agreed that the provincial government would prepare documents for package-4 [design of the track from Jam Sadiq Bridge to Numaish/Kashmir Road intersection] so that bids for the package could be invited by July 2022.

The chief minister said that the design of package-4 was in full swing with traffic, hydrological, structural, traffic and parking studies having almost been completed. The chief minister and the world bank country chief agreed that work on the perimeter boundary would be started in August 2022 while civil work on the project would be launched in June 2023.

Karachi Water & Sewerage Services:

The Karachi Water & Sewerage Services Improvement Project (KWSSIP) launched for $40 million to improve access to safe water services in Karachi and to increase KWSB’s financial and operational performance.

The chief minister told the delegation that a feasibility study for large works was completed last March, 2022. He added that detailed engineering design and tender documents both would be completed by July 15, 2022.

The CM said that the shortlist and RFP for Reforms Studies has already been approved by the World bank; the only evaluation report was due by mid-July. The contract for headhunting, CEO and Reform Managers, is in progress, the chief minister said.

Property tax:

The Chief Minister said that the collection of property tax has already been transferred to local bodies but they have capacity issues for collection. After a thorough discussion, it was agreed that the property tax collecting staff would be attached with the local bodies.

Sindh barrages: The Sindh Barrages Improvement Project (SBIP) is a world bank aided project launched for $219 million to strengthen the provincial Irrigation department’s capacity to operate and manage barrages and improve the reliability and safety of Guddu and Sukkur barrages.

The project includes rehabilitation and modernization of Sukkur barrage to provide reliable water to 10 canals and reduce floods. This will be achieved under the oversight of a newly established Barrage Monitoring Unit.

The World bank representatives said that $78.5 million have been released to finance ongoing works at Guddu Barrage. The chief minister said that the Sukkur Barrage works contract would be awarded by June 7. It was agreed that work on the project would be accelerated. Minister irrigation Jam Khan Shoro briefed the World Bank delegation about the works in progress and their issues.

Sindh Solar project: It is a $100 project launched to increase solar power generation and access to electricity in the province.

Under component one work on the installation of a 50 MW Manjhand was in progress. A trilateral MoU was signed between the Sindh Energy department, the World Bank and KE to develop a 350 MW solar power station at the outskirts of Karachi. Minister energy Imtiaz Shaikh said that land for the 350 MW solar power plant was being finalized.

It was disclosed that out of 21 hospitals, 11 hospitals have been provided solar panels and the remaining 10 hospitals would be provided soon for which RFP would be published by June 10.

Projects in pipeline:

The projects in pipeline were also discussed. They include Sindh Livestock and Aquaculture Sectors Transformation Project, Karachi Community and Informal economy, Rural Programme for Stunting reduction and Sindh Secondary Cities.

Chairman P&D Hassan Naqvi briefed on the scope of the project to the visiting delegation. It was agreed the provincial government would submit their documentation with the World Bank for necessary evaluation and approvals.

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