Balochistan govt puts Quetta Mass Transit project on hold


ISLAMABAD: Balochistan government has decided to put on hold the Quetta Mass Transit project of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) as all the four mass transit schemes in the provincial capitals face significant delays.
According to government sources, Pakistan had conveyed to China about its decision during a meeting of the Joint Working Group (JWG) on transport infrastructure of CPEC which was held this month.
Sources added that the provincial government took the decision to put the project on hold on the basis of a pre-feasibility study that found the mass transit scheme financially unviable.
Balochistan government was reviewing the mass transit option and considering both rail and bus routes, according to the discussions that took place in the JWG meeting.
In November 2017, Pakistan and China had agreed to launch mass transit projects in Quetta, Peshawar and Karachi after the provincial governments had complained about starting the mass transit scheme in Punjab alone – the Orange Line Metro Project Lahore.
Since the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government came to power, the Orange Line Metro Train project also faced delays. Sources said the Chinese contractors complained about the non-resolution of issues that were affecting operationalisation of the project.
The status of all ongoing CPEC projects would be discussed during the Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) meeting that would be held from November 5-6 in Islamabad. By Shahbaz Rana