KARACHI: The Sindh government has contracted Changyi Kangjie Group, a Chinese sanitation company, to lift garbage from the south and east districts of Karachi.

The contract was finalised during a meeting between Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah and officials of the Changyi Kangjie Sanitation Group here on Friday.

According to an official present in the meeting, the company informed the chief minister that its cleaning machinery will reach Karachi by the first week of January 2017.

The company will start its operations, including garbage lifting from houses and mechanical sweeping of roads, by the end of January or the first week of February.

The Sindh government has been struggling to contain Karachi's garbage emergency. In neighbourhoods across the city, mounds of garbage can be seen steadily piling up, often creating hurdles for foot and vehicular traffic.

There is no reliable data on the amount of solid waste the metropolis generates on a daily basis, though estimates suggest it runs into thousands of tonnes.

Much of the waste ends up in dumps, alleyways and open spaces, where it remains for weeks if not longer. Some of it is burnt in bonfires are feared to create health and environmental hazards.

The provincial government also signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with another Chinese company to produce electricity from garbage and agricultural waste in Karachi and other parts of the province.

The agreement was signed during Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah's visit to the China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC) in Beijing.

Under the agreement, CSIC and its sister company Dewe Group Holding Co Ltd will produce electricity from garbage lifted in Karachi, said an official.

The Chinese company will also generate power from agricultural waste collected from rural areas of Sindh, he added. Besides shipbuilding, the CSIC has expertise in producing electricity from garbage, and is also involved in producing wind power, said the official.