Mar 09, 2017 05:28 PM

China’s Gezhouba Digs in for Pakistan Dam

(Beijing) — Infrastructure builder China Gezhouba Group Co. Ltd. has formally agreed to build a hydropower plant in Pakistan in the largest such project of its kind for the country, as China tries to extend its regional influence through such support.

The agreement paves the way for work to begin on the Dasu Dam project on the Indus River, with a total cost of 486 billion Pakistani rupees ($4.6 billion), according to the Pakistan Water & Power Authority’s website. Actual construction will begin this month or next, with a target completion date of 2023.

Gezhouba formally launched the project with a signing ceremony on Wednesday, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

Upon completion, the dam will be 242 meters tall and have energy generating capacity of 6.4 megawatts (MW), including 2.2 MW from its first stage and 4.3 MW from its second, according to the Water Authority.

The dam falls in the general area of China’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative, under which the country has pledged to help with infrastructure development along the historic land-based Silk Road running through central Asia, as well as a sea-based trading lane connecting China with Europe. China has also sought to boost its regional influence through its 2015 formation of the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank, tasked with helping to finance infrastructure projects throughout the region.

Contact reporter Yang Ge (

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