PESHAWAR, Feb 22: The National Highway Authority (NHA) expects to earn Rs60 million revenue annually through toll tax from the Kohat tunnel.

The construction work on the Rs5 billion project was in the final stage and the country’s first 1.9-kilometre-long subway would be ready for vehicular traffic by the end of April, project manager Pervez Gul told Dawn by telephone from Kohat on Friday.

He said the NHA was preparing toll tax to be charged from vehicles passing through the tunnel. Several thousands vehicles would pass through the tunnel, constructed on the Indus Highway with the financial and technical assistance of Japan.

The government expects Rs60 million revenue in the shape of vehicle operating cost.

The project manager said that work on 31-kilometre-long access roads   from Dara Adamkhel and Kohat sides had already been completed. The access road, the official said, could also be used for defence purpose.

The tunnel, the NHA officials said, would reduce the distance between Peshawar and Kohat by 20 kilometres and minimise travelling between Peshawar and Karachi.

The work on the multi-billion subway was started by the government of premier Nawaz Sharif and the contract was awarded to a Japanese company, Taisei.

He said that the tunnel had been equipped with modern equipments and all necessary facilities to make the journey of transporters safe and smooth.

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