Islamabad: According to a news source, Chairman of the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Authority Lt-Gen Asim Saleem Bajwa (retd) announced on Sunday (May 23) via his official Twitter account that significant work has begun on the 103-kilometer long Nokundi-Mashkel Road project in Balochistan to boost connectivity with Iran.
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Other road projects currently under construction to improve road connectivity between the two countries through Balochistan were also discussed by the CPEC chairman. He went on to say that a comprehensive design for the 200-kilometer Mashkel-Panjgur Road was currently being worked on.
The isolated regions of Balochistan will be made more accessible by linking National Highway (N)-40 with N-85 and Ratodero Motorway (M-8), also known as the Western Route of CPEC. He added that the new road links would connect the Chagai-Nokundi sector to Gwadar.
Gwadar is becoming the center of all economic activities as a result of the CPEC’s infrastructure developments. To boost Gwadar’s connectivity with the rest of the country, Bajwa believes it is critical to establish road projects in South Balochistan.
Construction of Hoshab Awaran Road has started, according to another CPEC official, whose name was not disclosed in the news item, while development work on Baisma-Khuzdar Road is 60 percent complete. The 146-kilometer Hoshab-Awaran Road, which will link Gwadar Port to Sindh, is expected to be finished in three years for PKR 20 billion. The construction of the 106-kilometer long Basima-Khuzdar Road, which is expected to cost PKR 11.749 billion, will be completed by the end of the current year.
The official also provided information on the projects that have already been completed and put into action as part of the CPEC initiative. These include the Quetta-Hoshab (N-85) and Surab-Quetta (N-25) highways, as well as the Ratodero-Khuzdar (M-8) and Gwadar-Hoshab highways.