Given the impact of Covid-19, improving transport connectivity is critical for ensuring a robust local and global supply chain
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will provide Bangladesh $42 million in concessional loans to prepare road and railway sector projects promoting multimodal transport and connectivity in Bangladesh.
In this regard, the ADB and the government signed an agreement on Tuesday.
Fatima Yasmin, secretary, Economic Relations Division (ERD), and Manmohan Parkash, country director, ADB, remotely signed the loan agreement on behalf of Bangladesh and ADB, respectively.
“Bangladesh needs to boost connectivity between different transport modes, strengthen multimodal and arterial transport corridors, as well as construct bypass and connecting roads to promote domestic and international trade,” said ADB Country Director Manmohan Parkash.
Given the impact of Covid-19, improving transport connectivity is critical for ensuring a robust local and global supply chain, he added.
Highlighting the opportunities that such projects would offer for the private sector, Parkash noted that multimodal transport can accelerate economic activities including international trade.
“It will also help accelerate economic activities by reducing transportation costs and time, and increasing competitiveness, and efficiency,” he remarked.
“This project is supported by a project readiness financing (PRF) loan, which is an innovative financing instrument introduced in 2018. Through this project we are supporting the government’s initiative to prepare the transport sector’s complex projects very well so that they are implemented quickly and efficiently,” Parkash added.
The project, Transport Connectivity Improvement Preparatory Facility, will help with: feasibility studies and detailed design, risk assessment for gender, labour, and other social issues, environmental impact assessments, climate risk and vulnerability assessments, environmental management plans, resettlement plans, indigenous people’s plans, and risk mitigation plans for ensuing projects.
The PRF will support project preparation in areas including road and rail connectivity of ports, land ports, and border crossing points; road and rail connectivity of intermodal transshipment facilities, including inland container depots and inland container terminals; strengthening of corridors, including bypasses, connected roads, and alternate routes; and sector-wide improvements, including safety, traffic management, and maintenance.
The total cost of the endeavor is $57.2 million, of which the government will provide $15.2 million. The PRF is due for completion at the end of 2024.