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Rasheed-Jing meeting: Beijing partnership to be given preference in new rail projects

ISLAMABAD: Federal Railways Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed on Thursday said that Beijing partnerships would be given preference in new railway projects.

The federal minister expressed his views while meeting with Chinese ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing where they held discussions over ongoing projects initiated between Pakistan and China.

Both personalities emphasised discussion over early completion of the design study of Peshawar-Karachi ML-1 project.

Rasheed said the 1800-km-long railway track project, ML-1, which would be completed in five years with the cost of $8 billion, possessed eminent importance for Pakistan Railways and national economy. He reiterated that the Gwadar port project will bring revolutionary prosperity in the region.

He expressed hopes for a conclusive agreement between Pakistan and China during the upcoming visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan scheduled in April.

Early completion of ML-1 and ML-2 projects will establish railway link in central Asian countries along with China, Afghanistan and Iran, Rasheed said. He added that it was essential to accelerate the upgradation of railway and road infrastructure to achieve the goal of national economic growth.

The railway minister invited Chinese companies for partnership in the upgradation of Quetta, Zahedan and Taftan railway network.

The envoy assured Sheikh Rasheed for full cooperation and support for the development of Pakistan Railways by China.

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