After the success of Metro bus project and the announcement of Orange Line Service Punjab Government will now launch another transport project in the month of march next year for the people of Punjab. The Punjab Government will launch its first ever ferry service named as ferry service Punjab by utilizing waterways for transportation.
As high-cost transportation and big traffic is a big problem in Pakistan so the ferry service Punjab is aimed to reduce the transportation cost and traffic and provide the people of Punjab a very comfortable ride in a very low cost.
This project is named as ‘Inland Transportation’ by the Inland Water Transport Development Company (IWTDC). The project will provide cheap cargo and passenger transportation services and is considered to reduce the transportation cost by almost 50% than the road and railway modes of transportation because a ferry will be able to cover a distance of 180km with just 1litre fuel and carrying a ton of cargo, compared to 25km on road and 75km on rails.
In the first phase, the service will start from Daudkhel and will end at Attock. The Punjab government has planned the project at an equity of Rs200 million with authorised capital is Rs500 million. The head office of ferry service Punjab is located at Rawalpindi and the operational facilities are set at Daudkhel and at three field camps along the River Indus.
Benefits of Water Transport
The ferry service Punjab is planned to cover 180km distance carrying a ton of cargo by burning only 1 liter of fuel and which can cover only 25km and 75km on rail so the saving in fuel and foreign exchange is expected.
More than that the water transportation is 80% lower in cost than the cost of building highways and also maintaining waterways are more easy and marginal than maintaining a road or highway.
Tourism and Safety
Waterways are always been friendly than the road and rail services due to the absence of traffic problem and of having a new experience of water transport so the initiative would give a boost to the dying tourism.
It would also reduce the loss of human lives in the road accidents as huge volumes of cargo are hauled across. The ferry service Punjab will lessen the load on roads.
Investment and Job Opportunities
Multinational shipping companies have shown their interest in investing in ferry project Punjab. The government of Punjab will start the bidding next month for selecting a private company to run the services. The government of Punjab has purchased only the first ferry for the project and rest of the ferries, river crafts and ships are the responsibility of the company that wins the project.
The ferry service Punjab will also provide job opportunities in the province and will promote river transport. Several main rivers and canals in Pakistan have the potential for navigation and transport goods and passengers after remodelling.
The project of ferry service Punjab will introduce will be an alternative mode of transportation because 96 % of country’s traffic and also domestic, international and transit trade is currently handled by the most outdated ships and the overloaded road sector.