Panzinchaung Bridge, which will link Buthidaung and Rathedaung townships in Rakhine State, is expected to be put into service in early 2017.
The bridge, which is the longest span on the route, will contribute to development and flow of goods into Rakhine State.
The government is planning to build ten bridges along the route for increased regional development.
The 960-foot long bridge was built on 1 April, 2015 and can withstand 60 tonnes of weight.
“The main cause of underdevelopment is poor transportation. Everything, including health, education, economy and social conditions, lags behind other states because of the poor transportation”, said U San Mra Tha, a local resident. “The population decrease of ethnic people in Rakhine State was also caused by poor transportation. Many ethnic people have left the state in search of greener pasture”.
“The government needs to give more support to the state,” he added. Buthidaung-Rathedaung road is 36 miles long and it is the first land route between the two townships. It will also contribute to the interests of local residents along it.
At present, local people have to rely on ferries and hovercraft for transportation and spend a long time travelling. Now the two townships will be linked by the road and local people can travel from one township to another within a very short time thanks to the road and bridges.
“As transportation is poor and it takes a long time to travel from a place to another by boat, commodity prices also rise,” another local resident said.
Local residents hope that their lives will improve when the road and bridges along it are put into service.
Maung Sein Lwin