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KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and a 14-member World Bank delegation led by their Country Director Najy Benhassine reviewed the progress of WB-funded development projects ongoing in the province.

The meeting was attended by provincial ministers, Sharjeel Memon, Dr Azra Fazal Pechuho, Nasir Shah, Saeed Ghani, Sardar Shah, Jam Khan Shoro, Mayor Karachi Murtaza Wahab, Chief Secretary Asif Hyder Shah, PSCM Agha Wasif and all the concerned secretaries.

The meeting reviewed Karachi Water and Sewerage Services Improvement Project (KWSSIP), comprising three main components: Operational Reform with a budget of $7 million, Infrastructure Investments with a budget of $77 million, and Project Management and Studies with a budget of $16 million.

Informed by the World Bank, the Project Implementation Unit (PIU) is on track to achieve 90 per cent commitments by the end of July. The condition for this is that the supply contract for the flow meters is tendered by 2nd May 2024. Limited International Bidding was allowed by the World Bank in April 2024 subject to certain conditions.

As a result, the bidding documents are being finalized, and they will be sent directly to limited potential bidders by 7th May 2024. The delivery of customer and bulk flow meters is expected by November.

About the K-IV Augmentation works project, it was said that the project is estimated to cost $256 million. The World Bank team was informed that a joint timeline had been submitted to them by KWSB/KWSC, WAPDA, and Sindh Irrigation Department. The timeline includes mitigation options for any delays and a plan for interim water balances throughout the project construction phase.

The Irrigation Department has shared the detailed engineering design and hydrological analysis supporting the KBFU rehabilitation with the World Bank. Additionally, the department is currently in the process of awarding the contract for the rehabilitation of the Kalri Baghar Feeder.

However, Karachi Mobility Project (KMP) project comprises three main components: Urban Road Infrastructure - Yellow Corridor, costing $172 million, Development and Operationalization of a BRT System - Yellow Corridor, costing $260 million, and Capacity Building and Technical Assistance, costing $6 million.

Regarding the Road Infrastructure KPM component, the Jam Sadiq Bridge and another new bridge will be constructed as part of the Yellow Line BRT Corridor. The World Bank team was informed that the design work for Jam Sadiq Bridge and the new bridge is under way and will be completed by June 2024.

The transport department informed the World Bank team that the procurement process for the construction of Yellow Line Depot would begin after the opening of financial bids.

The BRT Yellow Line project has been divided into three sub-packages and two slots. Design and bidding documents for six km for lot one and another six km for lot two will be submitted to the WB by May 10 and July 31, respectively. The request for bids is scheduled for June 15.

The meeting was told that Competitive and Livable City of Karachi (CLICK) project has five components with a total budget of $230.20 million. These include Performance-based Grants for Local Councils and Capacity Building worth $140.40 million, Modernizing Urban Property Tax Administration and System worth $40.4 million, Improvement of Business Environment worth $20.20 million, Technical Assistance for Solid Waste Management worth $2.00 million, and Emergency Response Component worth $27 million.

During a recent meeting, it was disclosed that all but one of the 23 sub-projects contracted out by KMC have been completed. The remaining sub-project is currently undergoing minor finishing touches and is scheduled to be completed by May 5, 2024. The original scope of all the sub-projects has been fulfilled, except a 100-meter portion of the 1.2-km road at Anda Morr, which has been dropped from the project due to sewerage issues.

The procurement process for a $9.68 million contract has been completed, and the work will commence once the project restructuring process is finalized and the contract is signed.

The World Bank was informed that the Request for Bid (RFB) for the Property Tax Survey in Karachi has been published. The bids will open on May 23, 2024, after the Bank's Net Operation Loss (NOL). The selected firm will be on board by June 30, 2024.

About the Sindh Early Learning Enhancement through Classroom Transformation (SELECT), it was said that the project aims to improve the reading skills of primary students in early grades and increase student retention in primary schools in selected districts. During a discussion on transforming teaching practices in early grades, it was revealed that a contract was signed with a selected firm in April 2024. Material for Grades 1 and 2 has been developed in-house. The hired firm will develop material for Grades 3, 4 and 5 by October 2024. Printing for Grades 1 and 2 will commence from the second week of May after quantification and costing.

The meeting was told that the Sindh Infrastructure for Health Promotion Project (SIHPP) has been launched to improve the utilisation and quality of basic Reproductive Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health plus Nutrition (RMNCAH+N) services for poor and vulnerable populations, particularly women and children in targeted areas of the province.

The World Bank was informed that the cabinet had already approved funds for the operationalization of 50 Government Dispensaries (GDs) to the Pakistan People's Health Initiative (PPHI) in April. Sixty ambulances were delivered, and 10 Mobile Medical Vans were delivered to Sindh Institute of Emergency Health Services (SIEHS) in March. The delivery of the remaining 20 Mobile Medical Vans and five Mobile Laboratories will be completed by May 13, 2024. The mobile medical units are being inspected daily by the inspection committee.

Contracts for 60 ambulances, 30 Mobile Medical Vans, and five Mobile Laboratories have been signed with Sindh Integrated Emergency and Health Services.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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Owais May 04, 2024 09:51pm
Sindh Govt neither have capacity nor experties to do tasks assigned by world bank. Borrowing money will go either in drain or in someone s pockets.
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