China State Construction Engineering Corp has formally handed over Pakistan’s M5 motorway. The 392-kilometre stretch of road, also known as the Sukkur-Multan Motorway, was turned over at a ceremony in late December, attended by CSCEC executives and representatives of China Eximbank.
The motorway, which opened to traffic in November 2019, forms part of the country's Peshawar-Karachi Motorway (PKM), and was designed for speeds of up to 120km per hour. Total investment stands at US$2.9 billion.
It is the largest transportation infrastructure project under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) initiative.
"More than 29,000 jobs were created for the locals in the peak time of construction and the operation of the motorway will be all done by the Pakistani side [from now on]," Xiao Hua, general manager of the PKM project, was quoted by Xinhua as saying at the handover ceremony.
The CPEC projects have been progressing well in spite of the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, said Asim Saleem Bajwa, chairman of the CPEC Authority.