The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved $800 million multitranche financing facility (MFF) to help improve regional connectivity and trade in the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) corridors in Pakistan, a press release by the bank stated.
The investment program in intended to expand Pakistan’s regional connectivity links. Road networks in Sindh, Punjab, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will be upgraded with the MFF’s first tranche, worth $180 million in 2017. The second and third tranches, worth $260 million and $360 million, respectively, are expected to be approved in 2019 and 2021.
“Pakistan’s unique geographic location—at the crossroads of Central Asia, the People’s Republic of China, and South Asia—provides a unique potential and opportunity for the country to become a regional transport and trade hub,” said Dong-Soo Pyo, ADB Director, Transport and Communications Division, Central and West Asia Department. “The investment program will help the Government of Pakistan realize this potential, improving trade and connectivity in the CAREC corridors with the long-term goal of achieving inclusive growth and sustainable development in mind.”
The MFF will upgrade and rehabilitate a total of 747 km of road along the CAREC corridor. The investment program will also focus on strengthening the capacity of the National Highway Authority to conduct due diligence work for subsequent tranches as well as to implement each tranche project under the MFF as designed, the press release stated.
ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration.