Gwadar Eastbay Expressway, a dedicated CPEC artery linking Gwadar port to China, is likely to be open to all commercial traffic on May 16 after Eid ul Azha, Gwadar Pro reported on Saturday.
The 19–kilometer-long six-lane road is the main artery of Gwadar Port, through which the entire traffic of the port will realize the dream of making Gwadar a logistic and economic hub of the region in line with objectives of CPEC as well as the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
Eastbay Expressway will provide primary connectivity between the port & its Free Zone I and Free Zone II with Makran Coastal Highway (N-10) and Motorway 8 (CPEC’s Western route) for smooth logistic transportation of import, export, and transit goods to Khujrab, border of China.
In an interview with Gwadar Pro, Eastbay Expressway Project Director Imam Buksh Bezenjo, official of Gwadar Port Authority (GPA), said that ribbon-cutting of the Eastbay Expressway is highly expected on May 16.
“Since we have run test-drive successfully recently, we will complete all major works including road marking, installation of cat-eyes, erection of boards of signage & direction signs and installation of cameras in April, the Eastbay Expressway will be open to traffic in May,” he added.
“Countdown has started as a few days are left to inaugurate the Eastbay Expressway that has also played an important role in creation of jobs. Since the beginning till date, around 1300 locals of Gwadar have been employed,” he replied.
GPA manager operation Capt Gul Muhammad said that GPA and China Communication Construction Company (CCCC) have cooperated in mega work from designing, modeling and physical construction of the Eastbay Expressway.
GPA chairman, Naseer Khan Kashani said: “we are planning to open Gwadar Eastbay Expressway in May after Eid Ul Azha. Its completion would trigger a major jump in the development of Gwadar. ”
Gwadar Eastbay Expressway was approved by ECNEC on January 12, 2015. The contract was signed between GPA & CCCC on September 24, 2017. The groundbreaking ceremony of the Eastbay Expressway was held by then Prime Minister on November 22, 2017.
The project is part of a wider $1.1 billion development package for the city and Port of Gwadar. The contract was awarded in government-to-government mode, since China provides an interest-free loan for projects under CPEC.
The projects in Gwadar are conducted under a framework agreement with National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) of China and a MoU with Ministry of Commerce of China (MOFCOM) and Exim Bank.
Additionally, a MoU for the Gwadar East-Bay Expressway was signed between the Gwadar Port Authority and the Chinese Construction Company.