New Delhi (NVI): The New Development Bank (NDB) today signed two loan agreements of USD 646 million with the Central Government and the government of Andhra Pradesh, to upgrade highway network and district road network in the state.
According to an official statement, the loan agreements signed for up to USD 323 million each for two road sector projects.
The government of Andhra Pradesh will implement these projects through the Roads and Buildings Department.
The agreement was signed by Baldeo Purushartha, Joint Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, behalf of the Government of India, MT Krishna Babu, Principal Secretary, Roads and Building Department on behalf of the Government of Andhra Pradesh and Xian Zhu, Vice President on behalf of the NDB.
In an official statement, the Ministry of Finance said, the first project of Andhra Pradesh roads and bridges reconstruction project – comprises widening 1,600 km of state highways to double lane and reconstructing dilapidated bridges on the state highway network.
The next project of mandal connectivity and rural connectivity improvement project – comprises widening 1,400 km of district roads to double lane and reconstructing dilapidated bridges on the district road network, it added.
After signing the agreement, Purushartha said, “India is committed to sustainable development and inclusive growth.”
“The projects will contribute to the development of state infrastructure, enhance road connectivity and safety, and provide connectivity between adjoining Mandal headquarters and rural areas. The projects will also have a positive impact on employment generation and economic well-being,” he added.
The ministry further said, the two projects are expected to improve mobility and connectivity to the socioeconomic centres, enhance transport efficiency, improve road safety and riding quality, and provide all-weather accessibility for the State’s road users.
It would also increase the roads’ daily traffic capacity to 15,000 passenger car units, which is expected to meet the projected traffic growth over the next 20 years.
Xian Zhu also said, “NDB funding shall help to bridge the funding gap for road infrastructure development and will support the Andhra Pradesh government in its goal to enhance connectivity between socioeconomic centres.”
The NDB was established based on the Inter-Governmental agreement among the BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) signed on July 15, 2014. The Bank’s purpose is to mobilise resources for infrastructure and sustainable development projects in BRICS, the statement added.