Until building of the Karakorum Highway (KKH), the region of Gilgit-Baltistan to great extent remained incommunicado with the outside world. Though the region has served as crossroad for different parts of South and Central Asia, the movement were restricted mainly by harsh climatic conditions, rugged geography and inaccessible mountain passes. For movement people relied on pony tracks passing through treacherous terrain. The cumulative result appeared in regional isolation and special poverty. Construction of the KKH helped ending the isolation and exposed the society to exogenoius lifestyles, consumerism and market forces on the one hand, and enable people to make outward movements for better livelihood opportunities and selling their agriculture produce. However, there are still areas in Gilgit-Baltistan, which remained backward because of inaccessibility to major town, cities and markets because of lack of road infrastructure.
Realizing the significance of roads in connecting communities with markets, ETI under its initiative of FMR endeavors to connect farm with market. FMR component aims at improving critical road linkage for the supported value chains for linking the production areas to valley roads and main roads. The sub-component finance upgrading of shingle compacted roads. Through this existing pony tracks will be upgraded to jeepable roads and jeepable roads will be upgraded to truck able roads. In addition, a lump sum provision of 220 meters of bridges would be made. Completion of roads will be aligned with development of value chains in various areas and land development under irrigation component.
Programme Coordination Unit (PCU), through Its Infrastructure Expert, exercises overall control over the entire procurement and payment process to ensure quality and timeliness. GB PWD is responsible for implementation of ETI’s FMR sub-component through dedicated staff at provincial and district levels. Public Works Department (PWD) works in close coordination with WMD and SMPs for phasing and selection of roads and execution of road works.