On July 27, Ziya Mammadov, Azerbaijan’s Minister of Transport on the government’s behalf and Olly Norojono, ADB’s Resident Representative in Azerbaijan signed a $200 million third tranche loan of the $500 million multitranche financing facility for Road Network Development Program.
ADB approved the loan on 14 December 2011. It will finance construction of approximately 39 km of a new four-lane highway between Masali and Astara from kilometer 22 to 61.
The project will also provide management support and consulting services for construction supervision, financial audit, social and environmental assessments, and institutional capacity development.
“ADB understand that Masali-Astara Highway is a high priority of the Government. It forms part of the country’s primary north-south highway linking the capital, Baku, to the southern border. The highway is in poor condition, resulting in high transport costs, long delivery times, and traffic accidents", Norojono said.
"This constitutes impediments to non-oil sector growth and poverty reduction in Azerbaijan, as well as regional trade development" Norojono noted.
He further highlighted that ADB therefore support the government in improving the project road that will promote domestic and regional trade, thus contributing to the achievement of the objectives of the State Program on Poverty Reduction and Economic Development. /APA/