New Approaches to the Provision of Major Highway Infrastructure in Pakistan
KEY G and TURNER D, Halcrow Fox, UK
The Government of Pakistan is currently investigating ways of attracting private sector investment in the development of the country's national road network. The main motivation is a need to provide new roads at a faster rate than would be possible using
The Government of Pakistan is currently investigating ways of attracting private sector investment in the development of the country's national road network. The main motivation is a need to provide new roads at a faster rate than would be possible using public sector funding alone. A further consideration is the involvement of international expertise in the implementation and operation of projects. Also, private sector participation can help to bring about greater mobilisation of resources by providing an acceptable framework for user charges to be levied.
PFI is not new to Pakistan. Federal Government policy calls for large scale involvement of the private sector in power generation. The groundwork has been done and a number of important projects are being planned and implemented. Thus, although PFI is new to the highways sector there is a good understanding of the realities of PFI generally.
At the beginning of 1995, the Federal Government, through the National Highway Authority (NHA), invited the private sector to express interest in the financing, construction and operation of a number of major road and bridge projects which were judged to have a high priority in the country's development programme. While this generated some interest, little progress was made with advancing these projects because of the lack of an appropriate policy framework.
The NHA recognised the importance of devising a workable public-private partnership framework, supported by the fiscal, legislative, operational and organisational measures necessary for its success. The NHA and the Asian Development Bank therefore initiated a study1, on which the authors worked, to prepare policies, procedures, model documents and an action plan to promote private sector participation in road development.
This paper has drawn on the findings of that study to illustrate the key factors that are of importance in ensuring that a workable public-private sector partnership is established.
Association for European Transport