Ex­ploit­ing the wa­ter route

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An agree­ment over set­ting up In­land Wa­ter Trans­port Au­thor­ity (IWTA) has been an­nounced by Syed Naveed Qa­mar, Fed­eral Min­is­ter for Wa­ter and Power. The cre­ation of IWTA has been termed im­per­a­tive by the Min­is­ter, as the body is planned to fa­cil­i­tate wa­ter trans­port which is much cheaper than road or rail and will lead to re­duced prices and cost of pro­duc­tion and cre­ation of more jobs.

Efficient steps have been taken to speed up the im­ple­men­ta­tion phase of the pro­ject. Di­rec­tions have been is­sued for the for­mu­la­tion of draft leg­is­la­tion for ap­proval from the Coun­cil of Com­mon In­ter­ests. Naveed Qa­mar has also ap­proved the in­stal­la­tion of a pilot pro­ject on the In­dus River, in­clud­ing the ef­forts of Wa­ter and Power De­vel­op­ment Au­thor­ity (WAPDA) and Pak­istan Navy in this re­gard. Cur­rently, al­most 96 per­cent of Pak­istan’s freight is car­ried by road and less than 3 per­cent by rail caus­ing high costs and pro­duc­tion im­bal­ances. Es­tab­lish­ment of ITWA will of­fer cost-ef­fec­tive trade op­por­tu­ni­ties

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