Work to improve roads in Kaysone Phomvihane, Phin and Sepon districts in Savannakhet province will begin next year and will take 18 months to complete.
The cost is estimated at over US$22 million, with the project aiming to develop the economy of the province towards becoming a hub for trade and investment.
Director of the Greater Mekong Sub-region East-West Economic Corridor Towns Development Project, Ms Phouthalom Saysanavongphet, told Vientiane Times that the 6.2-km long Kaysone Phomvihane Road will be paved with asphalt, widened to four lanes, have two roundabouts, and will have streetlights and drainage installed.
The 2.2-km long Fa Ngum Road will also be paved with asphalt. It will have two lanes, one roundabout, lighting, drainage, landscaping and a parking lot.
In Phin district, the central 9.9-k m road will have a double layer of asphalt, as well as the 4-km long Dansavanh Road in Xepon district. These two roads will have two lanes each as well as lighting and drainage systems.
The road upgrades will help to reduce traffic jams and enable the faster and more efficient transport of goods and people in the province and the region.
“These new roads a re in line with the province’s plan to promote tourism, trade and investment. They will facilitate economic growth, especially in Kaysone Phomvihane, Phin and Xepon districts,” Ms Phouthalom said.
The opening up of the area is key to driving socio-economic development and Laos’ graduation from Least Developed Country status by 2020.
Ms Phouthalom said the new asphalt roads would generate income for the country and benefit the local area in particular, helping to draw foreign investors to the region.
The upgrade was proposed as part of the provincial authority’s basic infrastructure development plan and is also part of the national socio-economic development plan.
The existing roads are quite old and transport is difficult due to the clouds of dust created in the dry season and the mud patches and potholes that develop in the wet season.
The upgrades will serve to improve transportat ion and boost social and economic growth by helping local people to rise above poverty, Ms Phouthalom added.
The road construction scheme is part of the Greater Mekong Sub-region East-West Economic Corridor Towns Development Project, supported by the Asian Development Bank with a grant and loan of over US$ 47 million, including a contribution from the government.
The project will provide a land transport link running 1,320 kilometres through Thailand, Laos and Vietnam, connecting the Andaman Sea and the South China Sea.
Source: Vientiane Times