The builder of China’s Three Gorges Dam has been contracted to build a $1.9bn hydropower project in Pakistan.
State-owned China Gezhouba Group Co (CGGC) will work with a local company on the 800MW Mohmand hydroelectric scheme in the northwestern province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, which involves building a dam on the Swat River and installing four generators, the company has said on its website, reports news agency Xinhua.
The consortium includes CGGC and Descon of Pakistan, with stakes of 70% and 30%, respectively.
The scheme’s rationale includes protecting local areas from floods, irrigating farmland, providing drinking water, and producing 2.86 billion kilowatt hours of electricity a year, said Xinhua.
The project will take just under six years, and will employ 6,000 people at peak activity.
China is heavily involved in Pakistan through the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a transformative transport-energy-industrial corridor stretching north-south from China’s western Xinjiang region to Gwadar on the Arabian Sea. Formalised in 2015, its estimated total investment value rose last year from $55bn to $62bn.
CGGC, headquartered in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, was the main builder of the Three Gorges project, notes Xinhua. Its other hydropower projects in Pakistan include schemes at Neelum-Jhelum, Dasu and Suki Kinari.
Image: A view of Pakistan’s Swat River (Power22/CC BY-SA 3.0)