PESHAWAR         -         Japanese Ambassador Kuninori

Matsuda called on Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan at Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

House Islamabad, in which detailed deliberations were held on areas of mutual interests

and developmental projects

in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.The meeting also agreed over mutual cooperation between government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

and Japanese government.

The chief minister said that with the assistance of the Japanese

International Cooperation Agency (JICA), road infrastructure

in the newly merged districts

will be improved, which would enhance commercial activities

and would also provide better travelling facilities to the people of merged tribal districts. He stated that 700km roads and bridges in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will be rehabilitated with an estimated

cost of Rs28 billion with the support and assistance of JICA, while roads, bridges and other infrastructure in rural areas

will also be improved. He added that strengthening of road infrastructure would help promote tourism and trade activities

in the province.Mahmood Khan further said that the government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, through planning commission of Pakistan, has forwarded

the concept paper regarding

improvement and rehabilitation

of damaged rural roads and bridges in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

to JICA and embassy of Japan. He stated that the selection

of roads has been done on merit basis including roads leading to basic public facilities and those that were damaged by natural disasters.The chief minister reiterated that Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan is taking efforts for improving accessibility to social services and enhancing community

activities. In this regard, the prime minister also launched the Kamyab Jawan Programme for the uplifting socioeconomic position of the country.He said that opening of Torkham border 24/7 hours and improvement of infrastructure

has increased trade and business activities in the province.

He maintained that the incumbent provincial government

is also taking steps for the improvement of trade activities

with the Central Asian Countries, which would further

strengthen economy of the province.The chief minister said that rehabilitation

of road infrastructure

would further boost tourism,

trade and exploration of mines and minerals in the province.

Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

is especially focused on promotion of national and international

tourism in the province,

which would increase provincial

revenue significantly, he remarked.He also expressed gratitude to the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Japanese government for their assistance and cooperation in developmental projects for Khyber

Pakhtunkhwa and hoped that both the governments would further enhance coordination

and bilateral cooperation in this regard.On the occasion, the Japanese Ambassador Mr. Kuninori Matsuda

expressed satisfaction over the improved law and order situation

in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and praised the government for promoting tourism and trade activities in the province. He indicated

that President of JICA is expected to visit Pakistan and would also meet Prime Minister Imran Khan. Provincial Minister Elementary

& Secondary Education Akbar Ayub, Secretary C&W and others