August 20, 2016

ADB to pour $100m into road upgrade

THE Asian Development Bank ADB announced yesterday that it will provide a US$100 million loan to upgrade a section of road in Myanmar which is currently considered the “missing link” of the Greater Mekong Sub-region’s East-West Corridor.
The completion of the Myanmar sections of the corridor will link Da Nang in Viet Nam with Mawlamyine and Yangon. Along with the ADB-assisted project, the Government of Thailand is separately supporting improvements to the road linking Kawkareik and Myawaddy on the border with Thailand, while the section between Eindu and the main Yangon-Mawlamyine highway is being rehabilitated through a government-managed build-operate-transfer concession operated by a private Myanmar company.
The loan will be used to upgrade a 66.4 kilometre section of a two-lane road between Eindu and Kawkareik townships in Kayin State which also has the principal road link to Thailand. According to the Asian Development Bank (ADB), 25 percent of Myanmar’s land-based trade relies on this route.
“Upgrading this stretch of the road will complete improvements to Myanmar’s sections of the GMS East West-Corridor. This will open up new economic opportunities for the state and country and support inclusive growth,” said James Leather, Principal Transport Specialist in ADB’s Southeast Asia Department.
The project will improve the road section in line with Greater Mekong Sub-region road network standards. An access road to a river port in Kyondoe Township will also be upgraded using the funds, said the Manila-based lender.
ADB’s loan comes from the bank’s concessional Asian Development Fund. Additional co-financing support of $20 million is being provided by the ASEAN Infrastructure Fund, with the Government of Myanmar providing counterpart support of $1.8 million. The project will run for over 3 years with an estimated completion date of September 2019.
According to the bank, the project’s scheduled completion date is September 2019


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