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AIIB to provide $260m loan for Kewatkhali bridge

  • Staff Correspondent
  • 2 November, 2021 12:00 AM
  • Print news
AIIB to provide $260m loan for Kewatkhali bridge

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Bangladesh will receive US$260 million loan form Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) to construct a bridge in Mymensingh designed to ease traffic gridlock on the highway leading to capital Dhaka.

Economic Relations Division (ERD) Secretary Fatima Yasmin and AIIB’s Vice President, Investment Operations Region 1 DJ Pandian signed the loan deal in Dhaka on behalf of Bangladesh and AIIB respectively.

Bangladesh made rapid social and economic progress in recent decades. To expedite and to get benefit of the progress, there is no alternative to the development of communication.

The existing Shambhuganj Bridge over the Brahmaputra River at Mymensingh is currently connecting the region with the capital Dhaka.

 Every day innumerable vehicles, including trucks carrying stone, coal and other imported materials from three major land ports located in Mymensingh division are using this bridge. Now its capacity is inadequate for timely communication.

In view of this, Road Transport and Highways Division has undertaken a scheme called the ‘Construction of Kewatkhali Bridge at Mymensingh Project’ which will be implemented by Department of Roads and Highways.

The objective of the proposed project is to reduce congestion and improve mobility and connectivity by addressing the cross-river bottleneck between Mymensingh and Shambhugonj on the Dhaka-Mymensingh-India corridor.

The project seeks to ease traffic congestion in the Mymensingh City by diverting traffic away from the city’s central area via the construction of the Kewatkhali Bridge over the Brahmaputra River at Mymensingh with the overpasses and approach road.

The construction of the proposed bridge will reduce the additional traffic congestion on the existing bridge and facilitate road connectivity between several districts of Mymensingh division and the land ports, EPZs and economic zones of the region.

This is expected to attract new investments and open the door to economic development. The Project will be implemented from July 2021 to June 2025.

Under the project, one steel arch bridge of 320m length, 780 m approach bridge, 551 m road overpass and 240 m railway overpass, 6.20 km highway with 4 lanes including SMVT lanes and one toll plaza will be constructed.

The loan will be received in standard terms and conditions of AIIB. The repayment period of the loan is 33.5 years including 5 years grace period, ERD officials informed.

Payable Front end fee is 0.25 percent and commitment fee is 0.25 percent per annum for undisbursed amount.