Ecnec approves 5 projects to develop district highways

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Dhaka, May 29: The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec) on Tuesday approved five projects to develop district highways in Chittagong, Rajshahi, Khulna, Rangpur and Sylhet zones spending an estimated cost of Tk 3,368 crore.

The approval came at the weekly Ecnec meeting held at the NEC conference room here with Ecnec Chairperson and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair, UNB reports.

Thirteen projects were approved at the meeting with an estimated cost of Tk 9,518.62 crore, said Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal while briefing reporters after the meeting.

Of the total cost, Tk 6,854.69 crore will come from the national exchequer while Tk 2,592.34 crore as project assistance and the remaining Tk 71.59 crore from the organizations’ own fund, he said.

All the approved projects are new, the minister said.

About the five highway projects, the minister said the district highways will be developed and expanded spending Tk 766.58 crore in Rajshahi Zone, while Tk 756.80 crore in Khulna zone, Tk 654.43 crore in Rangpur zone, Tk 652.10 crore in Chattogram zone and Tk 538.30 crore in Sylhet zone.

The projects will be implemented in Rajshahi, Khulna, Rangpur and Sylhet zones by June 2020, while those will be completed in Chattogram zone by December 2020.

In terms of cost, the biggest project is “Identification System for Enhancing Access to Services” involving Tk 1,883.30 crore.

The project has been taken to reach smart national identity cards to all voters across the country.

The second largest project is Construction of 500 MW HVDC (high-voltage, direct current) back-to-back station in Cumilla north for power transmission from Tripura, India involving Tk 1342.26 crore.

The main goal of the project is to ensure necessary infrastructures for the import of 500 MW of Power from Tripura and Asam of India to meet the growing demand of power at the eastern region of Bangladesh.

Power Grid Company of Bangladesh Limited under the Power Division will implement the project at Cumilla sadar by June 2021.

Of the project cost, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) will provide Tk 1,019.79 crore as project assistance, while Tk 252.51 crore will come from the government fund and the remaining Tk 69.96 crore from the organisation’s own fund.

The major project operations include construction of 500 MW HVDC back-to-back station at Cumilla north having 400 KV GIS switchyard.

The six other approved projects are Construction of Broad-Gauge Railway Track from Modhukhali to Kamarkhali via Magura at an estimated cost of Tk 1,202.49 crore, Agricultural Irrigation through Solar-Powered Pump at Tk 407.20 crore, Higher technology-based Jute and Jute Seed Production and Extension at  Tk 376.47 crore, Construction of River Port at Nagarbari with Ancillary Facilities at Tk 513.90 crore, Development of Dhanua Kamalpur Land Port at Tk 59.30 crore and Construction of Mail Processing and Logistics Service Center at Tk 365.49 crore.