To improve rural roads in five Indian states, ADB approves a multitranche financing facility (MFF) for the Second Rural Connectivity Investment Program.
The investment program is set to construct and upgrade over 12,000 kilometers of rural roads in five Indian states of Assam, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha and West Bengal. The program builds on the first Rural connectivity investment program back in 2012 totaling $800 million MFF which added around 9,000 kms of rural roads in the same five states.
According to Andri Heriawan, an ADB Transport Specialist:
“All-weather roads are crucial for economic growth, especially in India’s rural areas. Building on the success of our previous assistance in the rural roads sector, ADB will work closely with the Government of India to provide the connectivity to improve rural communities’ access to markets, health centers, education facilities, and other opportunities.”
The first tranche of the program will amount to $250 million and is expected in December 2017 constructing an initial 6254 of rural roads. The program’s second tranche is expected in the third quarter of 2019 and is of the same amount as the first tranche.
Some 2,000 project engineers will receive training on road safety and road maintenance in the program. Also, at least a third of workers hired in road construction and maintenance works will be women.
ADB will also provide a $500,000 technical assistance (TA) grant from its Technical Assistance Special Fund to strengthen the sustainability of rural road assets, disaster resilience, and innovation in rural road development additionally and is due for completion in December 2021.
Established in 1966 and based in Manila, ADB is set to reduce poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth and region integration. Owned by 67 members out of which 48 were from the region, ADB total assistance in 2016 equaled $31.7 billion including $14 billion in cofinancing.