The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Pakistan today signed a $197 million loan agreement to rebuild highways and bridges damaged by floods. Tariq Bajwa, EAD Secretary and Werner E. Liepach, Country Director for ADB in Pakistan signed the agreement.
The project will rehabilitate 212 kilometers of highway sections and 33 bridges damaged by the 2010 floods restoring critical infrastructure and improving traffic management capacities to boost economic growth.
The loan will also help build institutional disaster management capacity of the National Highway Authority (NHA) by equipping the staff with necessary skills to respond pro-actively and effectively to meet challenges posed by recurring natural disasters.
Werner Liepach, ADB Country Director for Pakistan, said:
Pakistan is vulnerable to natural hazards and climate change events. ADB has been assisting the country in improving its disaster management capacity.
In addition to rehabilitation projects, ADB recently assisted Pakistan establish the National Disaster Risk Management Fund (NDRMF) strengthening country’s institutional, financial and physical capacity to reduce the socioeconomic and fiscal impacts of natural disasters.
The post-flood highways rehabilitation project is continuation of ADB’s efforts to revive economic and livelihood opportunities of communities affected by natural disasters, as Pakistan’s transport sector contributes about 10% to the country’s gross domestic product, and the sector as a whole makes up about 10% of the economy and provides about 2.3 million jobs.
ADB support to Pakistan’s transport sector in the last ten years has helped to build or upgrade thousands of kilometers of roads and highway networks, benefiting more than 10 million people, and facilitating the expansion of domestic and regional trade.
Pakistan’s transport sector makes up about 10% of the economy and provides about 2.3 million jobs
ADB has been also supporting wide-ranging reforms and capacity development work, allowing the NHA to establish a road maintenance fund and a road asset management system, as well as take steps to improve road safety.
The project, which includes counterpart assistance of $21.9 million from the Government of Pakistan, is expected to be completed by September 2020.
ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, ADB is celebrating 50 years of development partnership in the region. It is owned by 67 members—48 from the region.