April 2, 2018
New Delhi, April 2, 2018: Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) signed an agreement with the Government of India to provide Official Development Assistance (ODA) loan amounting to 38,666 million Japanese Yen (approximately INR 2,500 crore) for the "North East Road Connectivity Project (Phase 2)". The ODA loan's conditions are very concessional, i.e. 1.2% for project activities and 0.01% for consulting services, and 30 years of repayment period (including 10 years of the grace period).
The objective of the Project is to improve the connectivity in North Eastern Region (NER) of India through improving the roads and bridges, thereby promoting regional socio-economic development. This assistance from JICA will help in laying bypasses for National Highway 40 in Meghalaya and National Highway 54 bypasses in Mizoram, which are the targeted sections in the Project.
The ODA loan agreement was signed between H.E. Mr. Sujan R. Chinoy, Ambassador of India to Japan and Junichi Yamada, Senior Vice President, JICA at the Iikura House of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Tokyo on March 29th, 2018.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Takema Sakamoto, Chief Representative of JICA India office said, "NER is an area with huge potential. Roads and bridges are essential for both better living standards and vigorous industrial development. Once completed, the Project will empower the people of North East India to travel easily, with the help of an improved infrastructure, which will provide convenient transitability and connectivity."
National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (NHIDCL) is the Executing Agency for the Project.
National Highway 40 (NH-40) is located in the southern part of Meghalaya. The targeted section of NH-40 is from Shillong to Dawki in Meghalaya with the length of 81 kilometers in total. The project consists of widening roads to 2-lane highways of 35.8 kilometers and to 4-lane highways of 10.19 kilometers (46 kilometers in total length), constructing 5 new bypasses of 21.4 kilometers in total.
National Highway 54 (NH-54), located in central Mizoram includes four bypasses from Aizawl to Tuipang in Mizoram, covering a length of 24.04 kilometers in total. The stretch of NH-54 is connected to the Kaladan Multi-Modal Transport Corridor, which connects India's north eastern states to Myanmar by road, inland water transport and marine transport. NH-40 and NH-54 will also be safeguarded with the slope protection technology to stop the road block caused due to landslides.
In March 2017, the loan agreement for the North East Road Network Connectivity Improvement Project (Phase 1) was signed between the Government of India and JICA. Phase 1 covered improvement of NH54 from the state capital Aizwal with the length of 350.7 km and improvement of NH 51 in Meghalaya from Tura to Dalu (with the length of 51.5 Km) NH-54 and NH-51 in Mizoram and Meghalaya states, respectively. Phase1 enabled easier access of farm produce to large markets.
The current narrow road is planned to be widened by the Project
New bridge will be constructed adjacent to the old bridge shown in the image
The Signing Ceremony took place between H.E. Mr. Sujan R. Chinoy, Ambassador of India to Japan (left) and Junichi Yamada, Senior Vice President, JICA (right) in presence of Mrs. Sushma Swaraj, Minister of External Affairs of India (extreme left) and Mr. Taro Kono, Minister for Foreign Affairs (extreme right)
Established, by a specific law, as an independent administrative institution under the Government of Japan, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) aims to contribute to the promotion of international cooperation, as a sole Japanese governmental agency in charge of ODA implementation. JICA is the world's largest bilateral donor agency. JICA works as a bridge between Japan and emerging countries, and provides assistance in forms of loan, grant and technical cooperation so that the emerging countries can strengthen their capabilities.
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