WB to issue extra finance to Azerbaijani road project
Azerbaijan, Baku, March 4 / Trend , I.Khalilova/
The World Bank (WB) plans to issue $50 million lax loans to implement a road project in Azerbaijan in 2009, the government said.
"The WB accepted Azerbaijan's proposal to change a construction plan of the Baku-Shamakhi-Mugan highway from two lane to four-lane," a source at the government said.
The Azerbaijani Transport Ministry proposed to the WB to reconsider a reconstruction plan of the highway, under which the road will be four-lane. Earlier, feasibility study of the project was developed on the base of a two-lane road construction.
Length of the road will be 124 kilometers. Under the approved project, its construction costs $90.11 million. Earlier, the WB planned to issue $72.09 million to the construction work and $18.02 million felt to the Azerbaijani government. The Transport Ministry has done new calculations due to price rise of the project, but they have not been divulged yet.
The Italian Todini Costruzioni Generali S.p.A. has been chosen as a general contractor to carry out construction. The Finnish Finroad company if the project's consultant.
The Tovuz highway will be constructed as part of the project. At present relevant measures are being taken to move people living in this territory. Length of the road will be 7.2 kilometers and 3.3 kilometers of them have been realized, the ministry said.
The Baku-Shamakhi-Mugan highway will connect the capital with west regions of the country. The project aims to reduce transport expenses and increase access, as well as transit and provide road security for passages via the Azerbaijani East-West corridor.
The WB Board of Directors approved the road project on Jan. 17 in 2006. The WB finances infrastructural projects via the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, i.e. loan resources are issued for 20 years with four-year grace period and libor+0.5 percent interest rate. However, extra financing is planned to grant under preferential conditions - for 35 year with 10-year grace period and under 0.75 percent of interest rate.
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