ISLAMABAD

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has expressed grave concern over the performance of the programme, it is funding, cautioning that this may affect the bank’s engagement with other provinces and cities of Pakistan, it is learnt reliably here Thursday. Official sources told that ADB mission, which has been holding meetings with various Pakistani ministries and departments under the Country Portfolio Review 2015, showed its displeasure over implementation style of the projects in Sindh. The Country Portfolio Review started on August 5 and will continue till August 12.

In the review of the ADB funded projects for Sindh, it was observed by the bank that the main reason for poor performance is related to week government ownership of overall programme and poor project administration, a source privy to the meeting told The Nation. According the source, reviewing the only ongoing engagement in Sindh, the Bank showed reservations over the method of the project is being implemented in the urban Sindh area which according to the bank view “further weakens the concept of urban reforms under the new utilities services companies”.

The ADB is currently involved with the Provincial government of Sindh on the project to improve quality of life of urban residents 2014-16, improving drinking water systems, sanitation systems and wastewater management through improved infrastructure, operation, and maintenance. The ADB is involved with the provincial government of Sindh since 2010.

According to the ADB, Improved Urban Service Management and Planning is the combination of physical and non-physical investments aim to improve quality, continuity and coverage of urban infrastructure services, while incentivising and supporting effective management and sustainable financing of urban service providers. The bank has clearly stated that this dealing of the Sindh government may affect the ADB engagement with other cities and provinces based on the similar concept, the source informed.

It is pertinent to mention here that recently in the new engagements Economic Coordination Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) also approved a project in Punjab, Rs17.7 billion Punjab Flood Emergency Reconstruction and Resilience Project. For this project, the Asian Development Bank is providing Rs16 billion loan. For Azad Jammu and Kashmir, ECNEC also approved the Rs6.6 billion revised cost of the 2014 Flood Emergency Reconstruction and Resilience project, ADB is providing Rs6 billion loan for the project, which will reconstruct 234 kilometers of roads damaged by the flash floods in the region in 2014.