Small dams to help develop remote areas: Naveed Qamar

small-dams-to-help-develop-remote-areas-naveed-qamarISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Water and Power, Syed Naveed Qamar has said that development of 12 small dams will help socio-economic uplift of remote areas of the country. He said this during a meeting held here Wednesday to review the construction of small and medium dams in all the four provinces. The meeting was co- chaired by Minister for Water and Power Syed Naveed Qamar and Finance Minister Hafeez Sheikh. The Finance Minister assured the meeting that maximum possible increase in funds would be proposed for water sector in the annual development plan 2011-12 keeping in view available resources.

He said that the government would provide all out financial support to other mega projects. Qamar said that President Asif Ali Zardari had inaugurated small dams in various provinces and it was his desire that the projects should be completed timely. The Ministry Water and Power would also help arrange finances to complete the dams in time. Naveed Qamar asked WAPDA to expedite work on these projects. Besides irrigation of one million acres of cropped areas which is the main purpose of the dams, the 12 dams will generate 58,000 jobs and help emancipation of women through allotment of developed irrigated land around the dams, he maintained.

Earlier, WAPDA Chairman Shakeel Durrani briefed the meeting on the current status of the small dams’ project. He said that 12 dams would be constructed in two phases in all the four provinces with storage capacity of 4 MAF flood water. In the first phase Winder and Naulong dams would be constructed in Balochistan, Kurram Tangi in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Darwat and Nai Gaj dams in Sindh and Ghabir dam in Punjab. It was also informed that Exim Bank China had signed a memorandum of understanding with Economic Affairs Division to provide 700 million US dollars for small and medium dams. – brecorder