ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Water Resources Moonis Elahi Wednesday informed the National Assembly that to meet the foreign currency requirement of first two years of Diamer-Bhasha Dam project, Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) successfully raised $500 million by issuance of first-ever Green Eurobond.
In a written reply to a question, he said that out of total proceeds of $500 million approximately, $300 million has been allocated for Diamer-Bhasha Dam project.
He said that Eurobond issuance is now a regular feature of financing strategy and market would be accessed through a programme of issuances in a phased manner.
He said that in addition to Eurobonds, Wapda will also arrange financing from export credit agencies in the form of buyers and supplier credit facility to finance the purchase of power generation equipment, which would be required few years down the line.
About Dasu hydropower project, he said that the World Bank has provided $588.40 million loan, while Foreign Commercial Financing (Credit Suisse Bank) loan is $350 million.
He said that local commercial Banks (Habib Bank Ltd-led Consortium)’s loan is Rs144 billion for the project. The House was also informed that distribution of Sehat Insaf Card would be completed in Punjab by March 2022, aimed at providing maximum health facilities to patients in the province.
“The facility [health card] has already been provided in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, while the cards distribution process is going to be completed in Punjab by March 2022. Now, the health cards are being provided to citizens in capital, whereas, the facility will be extended to Balochistan by end of December,” said Nausheen Hamid, the parliamentary secretary for national health.
Under the Sehat Sahulat Programme, she added, each national identity card holder would be provided the Sehat Insaf Card under which the treatment facility amounting to Rs1 million would be available on an annual basis.
She said that Balochistan government had decided to independently execute its own Health Card programme for all the permanent residents of the province by the end of December 2021.
Responding to a question, she said that Sehat Sahulat Programme was a social health protection initiative of the federal and participating provincial/regional governments through which Qaumi Sehat Cards for free and cashless indoor healthcare services were provided to the beneficiaries of the programme.
Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Ali Muhammad Khan called upon the provinces to fulfill their commitment of providing three percent of their National Finance Commission (NFC) award share for the uplift of erstwhile federally-administered tribal areas (Fata).
Responding to a call attention notice moved by Abdul Shakoor and others regarding non-provision of additional funds to ex-tribal areas, he said all the provinces have committed to contribute three percent of their NFC share for merged districts.
He said federal government and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa have so far contributed their due share in this regard and now Punjab, Sindh, and Balochistan have to fulfill their commitment.
The house also offered Fateha for the departed souls of former deputy speaker Sardar Muhammad Yaqoob, and ex-president Azad Jammu and Kashmir Sikandar Hayat Khan. The house was adjourned to meet again on Thursday at 4pm.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021