The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has reduced the volume of the II multitranche financing (MFF) for road construction in Azerbaijan from $800 million to $500 million, Baku Office of ADB told Trend on Thursday.
"The reduction in funding is due to the fact that the bank has decided to direct loans to complete construction of the Baku-Iran border highway, particularly of Alat-Masalli road," the office said.
This project provides the reconstruction of the 62-kilometer stretch of highway Alat-Masalli.
Given the international importance of this road, the Asian Development Bank plans to accelerate the process of reaching agreement with the Azerbaijani government on the issue of road projects funding. The question of the first tranche in the amount of $200-250 million will be submitted to the ADB Board of Directors until the end of the third quarter of 2012.
Alat-Astara road is an important component of two major international transport projects - the North-South and West-East. It is located on the transport route Russia-Azerbaijan-Iran, which is an important part of the corridor North-South. On the other hand, this road will provide Iran access to a resurgent Great Silk Road that is, the corridor East-West.
Part of the road Alat-Astara (Alat-Masalli) with length of 112 kilometers is already under construction through a loan from the World Bank and the Government of Azerbaijan.
Official opening of the section 1A (0-9 km) of Alat-Masalli road, which construction began in 2009 and carried out by Azerinsaatservis, will be held in December 2011.
The rest of the road (Masalli-Astara) is also constructed at the expense of the Asian Development Bank.
Some $400 million from the first ADB multitranche package for the construction of roads in the amount of $ 500 million has already been allocated to build Masalli - Astara road.