The Special Communication Organization (SCO) has forwarded PC-1 of Phase-II of Pak-China Optical Fibre Cable project for the establishment of Cross Border Network (Khunjrab-Gawadar-Karachi) along the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) routes.
Pakistan and China have agreed to extend cross border Optic Fiber network by laying 9600 km cable (Khunjrab-Gawadar-Karachi) along the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) routes with an estimated cost of $279.219 million.
According to official documents, the project would cost around $279.219 million with a ratio of 85 percent loan (China) and 15 percent (Pakistan).
Under the project, 9600 km OFC for Phase-II of Pak-China OFC project will be laid for the cross border fibre network (Khunjrab-Gawadar-Karachi) along the CPEC routes. The project will be completed in four years.
The documents further revealed the SCO has demanded Rs 779.279 million under the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) 2019-2020.
It is worth mentioning that National Assembly Standing Committee on Information Technology and Telecommunication was informed a one year ago that Phase-II of the project was endorsed by former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, however, the IT Ministry had maintained that there were some legal issues due to which SCO could not be allowed to proceed with it.
The first phase of Optical Fiber Cable (OFC) project worth $44 million, directly connecting Pakistan and China, was completed under the CPEC framework. China was providing 85 percent of the finances for the project while the remaining 15 percent were from the government of Pakistan. The project was aimed at enabling another high-speed international connection that caters to the rapidly growing internet traffic needs of both countries. Under the first phase, an 820km long cable between Rawalpindi and Khunjrab was laid down and was assigned to SCO.