Sub-Committee of Senate Standing Committee on Railways in its meeting was given a detailed briefing on Pakistan Railways projects relating to China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and the initiatives taken by Pakistan Railways. The meeting was told that up-gradation of Main Line-1 and establishment of Dry Port near Havelian is an early harvest project which is to be completed by 2025. Establishment of a new rail link from Gwadar to Mastung and Besima to Jacobabad is a mid-term project to begin in 2025 and end by 2030 and establishing a new rail link from Havelian to Khunjerab is a long-term project which will commence in 2030.
The meeting was held under the chairmanship of Senator John Kenneth Williams here at the Parliament House on Friday and was attended among others by Senator Gianchand, Secretary Ministry of Railways and CEO Pakistan Railways Aftab Akbar, Member Finance Pakistan Railways, Additional Secretary Pakistan Railways, Chief Engineer Surveys and Construction and officials from Pakistan Railways. The meeting was told that the project of up-gradation of ML-1 is at 8.2 billion US Dollars and is a strategic commercial project with loan on favourable terms. The up-gradation will enhance speed, reduce travel time, enhance the number of trains per day and hence will generate more revenue and will decrease the burned on roads. The up-gradation will be in two phases and preferences will be determined on basis of continuity of operations and condition of tracks.
The Committee was told that the feasibility study and land acquirement for mid-term project has been done and Pakistan Railways will be in a position to start the project as early as financing is received. The long-term project, however, is in its early stages of feasibility.