ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Wednesday signed six financing agreements worth $1,543 million for energy sector reforms, social protection, urban infrastructure, road sector, and water resources.
Economic Affairs Division Secretary Mian Asad Hayaud Din and ADB’s Country Director Yong Ye signed the agreements in Islamabad today. Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Omar Ayub Khan witnessed the signing of the deals amounting to $1.543 billion between the government of Pakistan and ADB, a statement said.
According to the statement, the financing agreements include a $300 million policy-based loan to support financial, technical and governance reforms to strengthen Pakistan’s energy sector; a $385 million financing agreement to improve urban infrastructure in five cities of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa; a $235 million project loan to dualise a 222-km Shikarpur-Rajanpur section of the Indus Highway (N-55); and a $603 million results-based lending programme to strengthen and expand the Ehsaas programme.
Two project readiness facilities for preparing Kurram Tangi Integrated Water Resources Development Project (US$ 5 million) and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Cities Improvement Investment Project Phase-II (US$ 15 million) were also signed.
Speaking on the occasion, Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Omar Ayub expressed his deep appreciation and thanked the ADB for its continued and enhanced financial support towards reforming the energy sector, improving road networks, enhancing social protection and developing sustainable cities in Pakistan.
He said that the KP Cities Improvement Project will help provincial and city governments to improve the livability of five cities (Abbottabad, Kohat, Mardan, Mingora, and Peshawar) by providing water supply, sewerage, solid waste management and green infrastructure. The project will benefit up to 3.5 million people in these five cities of the province, he added.
The minister said that the integrated social protection development programme will support the government's efforts to implement the Ehsaas programme, including social protection and poverty reduction schemes in line with the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan.
ADB Vice President Shixin Chen said that despite a challenging situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Pakistan government continued to make progress in implementing comprehensive economic, fiscal and structural reforms.
ADB’s Country Director Yong Ye said that ADB financial support will strengthen Pakistan’s economy and reduce the risk of external economic shocks.
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