RAWALPINDI   -  The authorities concerned, after revising the cost of Rawalpindi Ring Road project’s  feasibility from the initial estimate of Rs 144.414 million to Rs 90.975 million, has sent the PC-II to Chief Minister Punjab for formal approval.

The Provincial Development Working Party (PDWP) has reviewed the project and the cost of the project’s design and feasibility has been reduced from Rs144.414 million to Rs90.975 million.

According to RDA sources, the provincial government would decide whether the project will be built by securing a loan from the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank of China (AIIB) or through any public-private partnership.

A summary devised and sent to Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar for a final decision on the project and the provincial government also has to decide who will be the executing authority for the project, whether it will be the Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA) or some other body such as the Punjab Communications and Works Department (C&W). The 38-kilometre long Rawalpindi’s Ring Road Project will comprise a corridor from the G.T. Road to the Thalian Interchange along with link roads from Rawat and Tarnol.

The project would help improve economic connectivity and road transport efficiency for the twin cities, Islamabad and Rawalpindi areas.

Earlier, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) had expressed its desire to give a loan worth Rs. 47 billion during the tenure of the previous government. 

The bank’s team of experts had visited Pakistan four times which resulted in the preparation of a project proposal.

The AIIB had estimated the total cost of the project to be around Rs 61.699 billion ($459 million). Of this, the AIIB was willing to finance around Rs54.037 billion ($402 million), while the Punjab government was due to fork out Rs7.662 billion ($57million). Moreover, the government was supposed to procure land for the project using its own resources.