Torkham to become International Standard Border Terminal after upgradation


Rawalpindi:     To provide international standards facilities for cross border transit trade, National Logistics Cell (NLC) is working on mega project of upgradation of Border Terminal at Torkham.
Funded by Asian Development Bank (ADB), the project will boost bilateral and transit trade with Afghanistan, Central Asian Republics which will have positive bearing on overall economy of the country in general and soci-economic uplift of local tribes in particular. About 8 % work on the project has been completed since March 2019. However, the progress is severely hampered by serious issues regarding Land Acquisition and Resettlement Plan (LARP) for the project.
At the start of construction work, land measuring 300 kanals was handed over to NLC for construction of import yard. Two more pieces of land measuring 70 kanals and 14.27 kanals respectively were handed over for construction of export yard in March 20. The client has yet to provide 94.73 kanals of land required for construction of export terminals, passenger terminal and other facilities as provided in the project design. Non provision of land is likely to delay the project beyond stipulated completion date of June 2022.
It may be mentioned here that the present setup of Border Terminal is working as per interim plan for which 132 Kanals of requisitioned land of Army was made available to NLC in December 2014. A lease agreement for additional 300 Kanals was signed by FBR with Khuga Khel in June 2015. As per agreement the tribe gets Rs 600 per vehicle crossing the Torkham Border Terminal. In this regard, NLC has so far paid a sum of more than Rs 600 million to the tribe. In addition to the monthly share, Rs 20 million is also being paid to the tribe each year with 5% annual increase by FBR. NLC has also provided 85 % jobs at the border terminal to youth of Khuga Khel tribe. Moreover, NLC regularly undertakes social welfare projects like renovation of education institutions and medical camps in the area.