The Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif has said that the Pak- China Economic Corridor is future of the country and it will connect Pakistan with China and Central Asian countries making it a hub of transit trade in the region. Prime Minister said this in a meeting which discussed the Pak-China Trade Corridor from Kashgar to Khunjrab and Gawader. The Prime Minister, principally, approved the proposed alignment of Pak-China Trade Corridor, with directions to further evaluate the proposal in terms of time and cost efficiency.
The meeting was attended by Mr. Muhammad Ishaq Dar Minister for Finance, Mr. Ahsan Iqbal Minister for Planning and Development, Mr. Pervaiz Rashid Minister for Information, Khawaja Saad Rafiq, Minister for Railways, Mr. Tariq Fatmi, Special Assistant to PM and other officials.
Earlier the Prime Minister was given a detailed briefing on the alignment of the Economic Corridor starting from Khujrab Pass and ending at Gawader and Lahore- Karachi Motorway.
The meeting also discussed alternate and shorter route along KKH, connecting Chilas with Mansehra through Babusar Top. Prime Minister directed that this route should be developed on priority basis and a tunnel should be made across Babusar top making it accessible throughout the year. He directed that this route should be connected with Muzaffarabad through a road from Balakot and Garhi Habibullah. The distances must be reduced by building connecting bridges and tunnels by using latest technologies and equipments, he added.
The Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif also directed to prepare feasibility for constructing a road between Hawalian and Islamabad to provide a shorter route to Islamabad to commuters from Gilgit, Mansehra and Abottabad. The Premier stressed the need for mitigating environmental impacts during the construction of these roads.
The meeting also approved construction of Muzafarabad - Mirpur road which will reduce the distance between the two cities to 150 km and give Mirpur direct access to G.T road at Dina.
During the briefing the Prime Minister was told that the alignment for Lahore-Karachi Motorway will start from Babo Sabo Interchange on M-2 and connect with Karachi passing through Khanewal, Multan, Sukkur, Khair Pur and Dadu.
While addressing the meeting, Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif also directed to provide interconnectivity and linkages between Pakistan Economic Corridor, Indus Highway, Motorways and Grand Trunk Road to provide impetus to the economic activity in country and easier travel facilities to the commuters.