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Monday, November 29, 2021

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Seven fast-track projects gain pace

Mohammad Zakaria
14 Oct 2021 00:00:00 | Update: 14 Oct 2021 01:51:07
Seven fast-track projects gain pace

Seven fast-track government projects are gaining pace as coronavirus-related restrictions are being relaxed with infections falling.

The projects are — Padma Multipurpose Bridge, Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant, Matarbari Power Plant, Metro Rail Service (MRT-6), Payra Sea Port, Padma Rail Link Project, and Cox’s Bazar to Dohazari via Ghumdum Rail Line Project.

The implementing agencies now want to complete them within the stipulated time.

A progress report prepared by the Implementation Monitoring and Evaluation Division of the Planning Commission noted that the overall progress of these projects remained below 50 per cent till September while the financial progress stood at 42 per cent. The total costs of the seven projects are estimated at Tk 2,62,926 crore while Tk 1,12,73 crore has already been spent. The IMED report said the pace of work along with monitoring had increased.

IMED Secretary Pradip Ranjan Chakravarty told The Business Post that the works of these projects slowed down due to the pandemic-induced lockdown across the country.

“We are closely monitoring all the fast-track projects. We are sending recommendations to the respective implementing agencies after monitoring the project sites to speed up the works,” he added.

The secretary said IMED is sending recommendations in time to the ministries concerned to complete the projects within the stipulated time.

“We are increasing monitoring of the fast-track projects,” he added.

He said as per the direction of the prime minister, it became mandatory for the IMED to visit project sites or area for monitoring the works.

Padma Multipurpose Bridge

The construction work of much-awaited Padma Bridge project is nearing completion. Carpeting works on the bridge is likely to start next month. The physical progress of the project increased by 7 per cent compared to the past year. In September 2020, the physical progress was 81 per cent.

The IMED report said the authorities concerned wanted to complete it by June 2022. The project cost was estimated at Tk 10,161.75 crore in an August 2007 ECNEC meeting. It increased to Tk 30,193.39 crore for repeated extension of deadlines.

Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant

Works of Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant project, the biggest-ever project in the history of Bangladesh, is going on in full swing. The financial progress of the project is 38.78 per cent while the physical progress is 39.64 per cent. In September last year, the physical progress was 28.07 per cent.

Works of the megaproject commenced in July 2016 and are supposed to be completed by December 2025.

Metro Rail Service (MRT-6)

The trial run of metro rail from Uttara to Pallabi has been completed. Project officials said metro rail would run with passengers from December 2022. The IMED report said the financial progress of the project is 73 per cent while the physical progress is 50 per cent.

The works started in July 2012 and is supposed to be completed by June 2024.

Payra Sea Port

The financial progress of the Payra Sea port is 70.19 per cent while the physical progress is 83 per cent. IMED report said that the project would be completed by June 2022. Works on the project commenced in July 2015.

Initially the government wanted to construct a deep seaport at Payra but later the project was downgraded to a normal seaport.

Padma Rail Link Project

The Padma Rail Link project is progressing fast. The financial progress is 49.85 per cent while the physical progress is 44.50 per cent.

The project began in January 2016 and is supposed to be completed by June 2024.

Dohazari-Cox’s Bazar Rail Link Project

The physical progress of the project was 63 per cent till September 2021, the IMED report said. The project’s physical progress saw a 22 per cent increase till September compared to the previous year. The financial progress is 32.81 per cent.

The project works started in March 2018 and is supposed to be completed by June 2022.

Matarbari Power Plant

Physical progress of the Matarbari Power Plant project increased by 28 per cent till September compared to last year, IMED report said.

The report also said the financial progress of the project is 50.96 per cent while the physical progress is 59 per cent.

Planning Commission sources said the first revision of the project is now awaiting the ECNEC’s approval. The cost and time of the project will be increased.

According to the first revision, the Power Division sought 3.5-year extension of deadline for the Matarbari coal-fired power plant project. It also sought increasing the cost by Tk 15,870 crore for constructing additional infrastructures.