EIB to provide Armenia with $90 million loan to finance construction of North-South highway

18.02.2013 16:32
EIB to provide Armenia with $90 million loan to finance construction of North-South highway

YEREVAN, September 15. / ARKA /. The European Investment Bank (EIB) is set to provide Armenia with a $90 million loan to finance the construction of the North-South highway, Ara Hovsepian, head of a government non-commercial organization set up to handle the project, told ARKA.

In 2010 January the Armenian government signed a $500-million financial agreement with Asian Development Bank to fund the construction of the highway. Hovsepian said the release of the EIB loan will be considered at its meeting in early March.

According to him, the loan will be used to finance the construction of a 45-kilometer road from Talin to Gyumri. The first tranche of the ADB in the amount of $70.4 million is being used to reconstruct parts of Yerevan-Ararat (38 km) and Yerevan-Ashtarak (12 km) roads. The second tranche in the amount of $179.6 million will be used to reconstruct a section of the highway from Ashtarak to Talin. The work will be completed in June 2017. The project was launched in September 2012.

The Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has also expressed willingness to provide $50-70 million for the construction of the highway.

The goal of the project is to upgrade Armenia’s main corridor road (556 km long) as part of a broader thrust to improve connectivity, and boost trade, growth and livelihood opportunities in the Caucasus and Central Asia sub-regions. Funds will be released by the Asian Development Bank periodically through a multitranche financing facility. The transport corridor will stretch from the southern Armenian town of Meghri, on the border with Iran, to Bavra in the north on the border with Georgia.  The North-South transport corridor will enable Armenia to mitigate the effects of the blockade imposed by Azerbaijan and Turkey. -0-


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