A delegation led by the director-general of China’s National Railway Administration (NRA) called on the federal railways’ minister Sheikh Rasheed on Wednesday.
Sheikh Rasheed and the Chinese delegation held discussions over the progress of ML-1 project for 1,872 kilometres long rail network.
During the meeting, Rasheed said Prime Minister Imran Khan is taking personal interest for early completion of the Main Line-1 project as it is the heart of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) that would be constructed with the estimated cost of $9.2 billion.
The project will further enhance the friendly ties between Pakistan and China, he added.
He said that the distance between Karachi to Rawalpindi will be shrunk to 10 hours and the project will significantly help to increase the overall production of the country after its completion after the next five years. The rail network will also link China, Central Asia and Iran, he said.
Earlier on Tuesday, Federal Minister for Planning and Development Khusro Bakhtiar had revealed that significant progress has been made on the ML-1 project of Pakistan Railways and it has been decided to speed up work on it to launch groundbreaking in next six months.
Addressing a news conference in Islamabad on Tuesday, he said Pakistani and Chinese sides have agreed to take forward the cooperation in various sectors under China Pakistan Economic Corridor.
“JCC meeting of today remained very productive and many decisions have been taken to increase industrial cooperation between both the countries,” he added. He said the discussion was also held in-depth by both sides to enhance the steel production capacity of Pakistan.
The Minister said 300 MW power plant has been inaugurated in Gwadar and it is part of the development of the coastal city. He said the development of Gwadar and establishing a free trade zone in the city is among the foremost priorities of the government.—INP