ISLAMABAD-The execution of public-private partnership projects of the Capital Development Authority included in Public Sector Development Programme-Plus is not possible in existing legal framework.

The federal government has recently announced a three-year development plan (2020-2023), which is envisioned to be completed with the investment of private sector.

A total of 53 mega projects involving an investment of Rs2 trillion have been identified. The plan has been divided into two categories and is named as PSDP Plus.

The first category has 29 projects in 11 sectors with zero government involvement. The total investment in this category would be Rs9 trillion, while the second category has 24 projects in 7 sectors with limited government involvement. Total investment in this category would be Rs2.3 trillion.

The federal government pointed out at least six projects are to be implemented under PSDP-Plus, which includes a New Blue Area Project Islamabad, a 20km long Havelian to Islamabad Tunnel, expansion of 28km long Islamabad Expressway, 17km long road to connect Margalla Avenue to N-5—commonly known as GT road, waste to energy plant or waste to urea plant and a water treatment project.

The cost of Havelian to Islamabad Tunnel project is estimated Rs25 billion and it is envisioned that the said project will significantly decrease distance of Islamabad with Mansehra and GB.

Under a New Blue Area Project in Islamabad, government land would be used to attract private investors for developing a commercial area generating revenue and economic activity. The said project is estimated to fetch direct investment of Rs150 billion.

Expansion of Islamabad Expressway will connect Faisal Avenue with N-5 (GT Road) and the project is estimated to be built by Rs45 billion and government land may be leased in lieu of viability gap funding.

A new route connecting Margalla Road with N5 will decrease congestion on Kashmir Highway and IJP Road and this project is estimated to be cost at Rs25 Billion.

On the other side, a project to recycle waste water is also on cards and according to plan, the treated water will be pumped back to Rawal Lake for onward consumption of the city however the experts believe that the project is environment friendly but expansive in nature.

Meanwhile, a project of waste to energy was also identified for capital city as 500-600 Kwh energy can be produced per ton of waste and Pakistan generates 48.5 million tons of waste every year.

All of these projects are proposed to be completed with the help and funding of private sector under public-private partnership mode.

However, according to the senior officers of the civic authority besides the lack of viability of these projects, CDA will be unable to execute these projects as well on public-private partnership mode as its ordinance bars such ventures.

They argued that a joint venture was made between the authority and the Multi-Professional Cooperative Housing Society (MPCHS) in 2008 to develop northern strip but the same was struck down by Supreme Court of Pakistan, declaring that the CDA is not allowed for joint venture etc.

When contacted, the Chairman Capital Development Authority Amir Ali Ahmed said that though these projects cannot be initiated in present legal framework but we would take up this matter with federal government for new legislation.