WB set to approve loan for highway construction in Azerbaijan

Business Materials 28 March 2016 14:38 (UTC +04:00)

Baku, Azerbaijan, March 28

By Anvar Mammadov - Trend:

The board of directors of the World Bank (WB) plans to approve on March 28 the additional $140 million to fund the expansion of the Baku-Shamakhi highway, the WB Baku office has told Trend.

"Official talks on the loan have already been completed," said the WB office. "The WB board of directors will discuss the allocation of additional funding for this project tonight [Baku time]."

The loan will be issued through the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), which is a part of the WB group.

The total additional funds for the project hit $186.6 million. Out of this, $46.6 million account for the government's share.

Forty percent of the funds will be spent on restructuring and privatization of state-owned enterprises in this sphere.

WB's total investments in Azerbaijan's road projects (I, II, III road projects) amounted to $1 billion.

The funds will be used to carry out the remaining work as part of the additional funding.

Reconstruction of the Baku-Shamakhi highway is being carried out as part of the third project for rebuilding main roads.

The "Azerbaijan Highway 3 Additional Financing" project, totaling $356.15 million, was approved in 2010. The project includes two directions: 1) reconstruction of Azerbaijan's trunk highway system and transit corridors; 2) reconstruction of local roads as part of the regional development strategy.

The project for reconstructing the Baku-Shamakhi-Muganli highway is meant to expand it from a two-lane to a four-lane road. The project will be completed in September 2016.

Azerbaijan joined the World Bank in 1992. The WB has allocated $3.786 billion worth loans to Azerbaijan as of Feb. 1, 2016. These funds have been used to finance over 60 projects.

The country has absorbed $2.764 billion as of early 2016, or 73 percent of the total WB loans. Aside from the loans, the WB allocated 45 grants totaling $41.586 million to Azerbaijan from 1995 to 2014.


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