More than K69 billion has been invested in the Sagaing-Monywa and Ohn Taw-Shwebo roads, which were upgraded under a build-operate-transfer (BOT) system, said U Aung Zaw Naing, the CEO of Shwe Taung Highway Co. Ltd.
“We have conducted the road project since 2008. The road between Sagaing and Monywa is over 74 miles long, while the road between Ohn Taw and Shwebo is 43 miles long. When the project was handed over by the Ministry of Construction, the road between Sagaing and Monywa had a width of only 18 feet and that between Ohn Taw and Shwebo measured 12 feet. At the time, it took two-and-a-half to three hours to travel between Sagaing and Monywa and over 2 hours from Ohn Taw to Shwebo. The roads were too narrow and therefore, dangerous for traveling. We widened the Sagaing-Monywa road to 24 feet in 2008, and we upgraded the Ohn Taw-Shwebo road and increased its width to 24 feet in 2012.
The Shwe Taung Company upgraded not only the road, but also constructed 152 bridges, which measure under 180 feet in length,” he said.
The roads were upgraded with the aim to make travel safe and ensure smooth trade, and this has contributed greatly to regional development, he added.
“Constructing new roads is easier than upgrading old ones. The maintenance of roads costs K1.5 billion per year. A four-lane road will be more costly,” said U Aung Zaw Naing.—Myo Win Tun (Monywa)
(Translated by Hay Mar)