WB to give $200m soft loan to Punjab govt for green development project: CM


Punjab Chief Minister Chaudhary Pervaiz Elahi has said that the World Bank would give a soft loan of 200 million dollars to the provincial government for the green development project.

Chairing a meeting at his office here on Monday, he noted that the provincial government would install air and water quality monitoring systems in ten districts, including Lahore, Sheikhupura, Multan, DG Khan, Rawalpindi, Gujranwala, Vehari and other cities. The air quality monitoring systems and water quality monitoring stations would be installed at 30 and 15 places, respectively, under the Punjab green development project, he stated.

CM Pervaiz Elahi informed that an environment-friendly pilot project would be started in Lahore with 25 electric buses. The legislation would be enacted to control the use of plastic for environmental improvement; he added and asserted that a single-use of plastic would be ensured to eliminate environmental pollution. The solar panels would be installed on the roofs of government buildings under energy-efficient buildings plan in the divisions, while six DHQ hospitals had already been converted to solar energy, he explained.

He disclosed that a 50 million dollar environment endowment fund would be established under the proposed green financing strategy.

During the meeting, proposal to make a token tax for private vehicles subject to motor vehicle inspection and certification was also reviewed.

The chief minister said that inspection of equipment that causes environmental pollution would be included in VICS motor vehicles certification and soft loans would be given to six industries under the green investment project. Steel mills, rice mills, stone crushing, and leather processing industries would be included in the green investment project. Initially, loans of 30 million dollars would be provided to 100 small industrial units; he said and directed to start an awareness campaign to overcome environmental pollution.

Former federal minister Moonis Elahi, Chief Secretary Abdullah Sumbal, former principal secretary GM Sikandar, secretary of finance, environment, DG EPA and others attended the meeting.INP


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