Details submitted to the Senate during question hour revealed that Rs11 billlion have already been spent on the Pakistan Railway’s Mainline-1 (ML-1) project without construction work actually beginning.
As per details submitted by interim railway minister Shahid Ashraf Tarar, there were some changes carried out in the design to reduce the cost of the project.
Although there was no compromise on quality and safety during the design change but the submitted written reply reveals Rs11 billion had already been spent on the project before the work formally started, for design and feasibility study purposes.
Pakistan’s National Economic Council (ECNEC) in 2020 approved the railway project, known as Mainline-1 (ML-1), on a cost-sharing basis between Islamabad and Beijing.
As per the written submitted to the senate, More than Rs11 billion has been spent on the project. The reason given for the Rs 10.64 billion spent initially was for design purposes as well as Rs 390 million for the feasibility study of the project.
Permission has also been sought to start the bidding process for the first phase of the Chinese National Railways Administration (NRA).
The reply also adds that ML-1 was approved with a ‘rationalised scope’ on June 13 of this year by the prime minister.
The project will be completed in three phases however the project has not yet been formally started, the written reply reads.
Earlier it was reported, that the ML-1 project will be completed in nine years at a cost of $9.85 billion.