Friday, 7 July 2017

ADB Agrees To Increase Annual Lending

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ADB agrees to increase annual lending to Pakistan to $2bn

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has agreed to tighten its Pakistani loan of $ 2 billion annually over the next three years, currently under $ 1.5 billion, subject to swift preparation of project design and procurement.

Vice President Wencai Zhang, who spoke to journalists after talks with Pakistan's Treasury Secretary and Finance Minister Punjab, said Pakistan has asked to increase its flow of funds to more than $ 2.5 billion.

He said he is here to finalize the three-year national partnership, strategy and operational plan for 2018-21, and said ADB will continue to support infrastructure projects for transportation and railways, including interconnection facilities with its neighbors in South Asia, Central and others. Asia and Southeast Asia.

He wants the government to provide more than US $ 2.5 billion in annual funding to ADB, but the project's annual budget will be between $ 1.8-1.1 billion, depending on the project's processing time, according to the project's completion.

Zhang said ADB will continue to work on reforming the public sector and reforming the energy sector, particularly transmission and distribution, and improving energy efficiency.

He added that the bank is now more interested in urban transport systems and has recently partnered with other international lenders to approve $ 335 million in the Peshawar Bus Rapid Transport Project, starting with Punjab and planning more transportation projects.

ADB's new area of interest is urban water and sanitation projects as part of an integrated water management system that pursues financial inclusiveness through public-private partnerships, starting with the Punjab project in Sindh.

He also added that ADB is seeking ways to increase support for the social sector in technology and vocational education for technology development in youth and secondary health care.

He acknowledges that project preparation and approval processes have resulted in project delays, cost overruns and delays in achieving planned performance, while ADB improves procedures and also streamlines the project design, procurement and approval process for governments.

He did not comment on the recent macroeconomic situation and the transition to the next government, saying that such a decision should be taken by the Pakistani government if other IMF programs are needed. But the macroeconomic vulnerability of the country has decreased significantly over the past few years, he added.

He said that the ADB has been encouraged by the government's reforms that have taken steady, and that Pakistan should continue its substantive restructuring because it has to achieve a high annual growth rate of 7 percent.

Zhang said ADB had planned to make a major contribution to the development of the major rail network (ML-1) from Karachi to Peshawar, but later decided that Pakistan and China would be part of the China-Pakistani economy at the bilateral level. (CPEC).

He said ADB has raised this issue on the railway ministry that proposed several important projects to the ML-1 vessel. He said the two sides agreed to discuss the subsidiary route to carry out the project, but said ADB is no longer included in ML-1.

He used ADB's success in the energy sector to make more money and why he avoided asking why funding programs have weakened rather than strengthening energy sector regulators, but financial management, corporate governance and operational procedures It improved in the sector, but it needed to move on to the next level.

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