K368m loan for highway

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THE Government has signed a US$120 million (K368.58) loan with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to be used on the rehabilitation of the Highlands Highway.
Treasury Minister Patrick Pruaitch signed it, witnessed by ADB Pacific director general Xianbin Yao in Port Moresby last Thursday.
Pruaitch said the Government wanted to build transport infrastructure in the Highlands and the other regions to increase access and reduce risks.
“The Highlands region has been the food bowl of the country and hosts most of the country’s mineral resource deposits, including the PNG LNG project,” he said.
“Therefore, it deserves the attention and support that the government is providing. This does not show that other regions like Southern, Momase and Islands are missing out.
“The three regions have also a variety of programmes that are progressing well with the help of our development partners.
“The Government, in its bid to address access to better and safer transport infrastructure, access to markets and services for the people as well as reducing risks such as loss of life and environment damage, approached ADB for assistance.”
Two loans from the ADB and a grant from the European Union come under the Highlands Road Rehabilitation and Improvement Investment Programme.
The loan is part of the ongoing US$400 million (K1228.60m) multi-tranche financing facility road programmes approved in 2008.
The programmes will deal with the 2500km of national, provincial and district roads, and improve the capacity of National Roads Authority and Department of Works to deliver quality road infrastructure.

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