Tuesday, April 5, 2011

US pledges 500 million dollars for Diamer-Bhasha dam

Islamabad: The United States has agreed to provide over 500 million dollars for the construction of Diamer-Bhasha Dam in Pakistan, which is expected to be completed by 2021.

A senior Water and Power Development Authority official said that discussions between the US and Pakistani authorities had already begun to finalize the size of the financing and the mode of US participation in the project.

He said that the US assistance for the project would be a combination of investment and grant financing it had committed to under the Kerry-Lugar-Berman Act, the Dawn reports.

The Diamer-Bhasha dam project was part of the five mega dams proposed by former President Pervez Musharraf in 2006.

The dam's cost was initially put at 6.4 billion dollars, but it has now been revised to 11.2 billion dollars.

The dam will have a designed live water storage capacity of about 5.8 million acre feet (MAF) and power generation capacity of 4,500MW.

Earlier, the World Bank had declined to fund the project because of its location and some unresolved constitutional interpretations.

The project is located on Indus River, about 315 km upstream of Tarbela Dam, 165 km downstream of the Northern Area capital Gilgit and 40 km downstream of Chilas..ANI

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