The timely completion of Pakistan’s 1450MW Ghazi Barotha project requires further financial assistance. The Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) says that the project was scheduled for completion in 2002 but problems have arisen. Inadequate provision of counterpart funding has led to two problems: acquiring land and handing it over to contractors for construction of the power channel and power complex part of the scheme; and making timely payments to contractors for the work they have performed. Consequently WAPDA has defaulted on its obligations.

WAPDA chairman, Zulfinqar Ali Khan, has brought the situation to the attention of the Prime Minister. WAPDA feels it is incapable of meeting the future financial needs of the project and has consequently convinced the federal government to provide bridge financing. To assess the project’s progress, WAPDA will now hold weekly meetings with consultants and contractors to review technical issues.