The federal government has approved 90pc or Rs234 billion of the projects under Southern Balochistan Development Programme (SBDP) Phase-II. The new approved projects have been included in the Federal Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) 2021-22 for which Rs25.72 billion have been allocated in the current fiscal year, according to an official in ministry of planning. Likewise, during the current fiscal year, allocation for various ongoing PSDP projects (valuing Rs274.689 billion) under the SBDP amounts to Rs29.160 billion. The official informed that minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar had directed to prepare a priority list of projects to ensure adequate funding for fast-moving and strategic projects for timely completion. In November last year, the federal government announced a Rs600 billion package for development of nine least developed districts of South Balochistan including Washuk, Lasbela, Gwadar, Panjgur, Turbat/Kech, Khuzdar, Awaran, Kharan, and Chagai. According to the Plan, the federal government agreed to fund Rs540 billion while the rest Rs60 billion would be provided by the provincial government. The areas of development that included in the SBDP were water, power and fuel, agriculture, livestock, IT, industries, commerce and human development. Under the Programme, the National Highway Authority (NHA) has started land procurement for three projects including construction of Hoshab–Awaran – Khuzdar Section of M-8 [Awaran–Naal 168 KM] to be completed at a cost of Rs32 billion, Hoshab-Awaran Section of M-8 (146 km) to be completed at a cost of Rs38 billion and Rehabilitation and Upgradation Awaran – Jhaljao Road (54.8 KM) to be completed at an estimated cost of Rs6.9 billion. In order to address water shortages, especially in Gwadar, the official said funds have been approved for connecting the Shadi-Kaur dam with the Gwadar pipeline. Additionally, CDWP has accorded approval for the installation of a 1.2 MGD desalination plant at Gwadar Port through a Chinese grant. He hoped that the desalination plant would be completed within 6–9 months as per direction of the Planning Minister.