The agreement to upgrade the Maubin-Phyapon road was signed by U Maung Maung Win, Director General of the Treasury Department of the Finance Ministry, and Mr Winfried Wicklein, ADB Country Director for Myanmar.
U Kyaw Lin, Managing Director of Public Works of the Ministry of Construction, and other senior officials from the government ministries, as well as ADB officials witnessed the signing.
“The rehabilitation of the road will improve connectivity and reduce travel times in the delta and we believe it will have a high impact on the development of the region,” said U Kyaw Lin.
Lack of investment in road maintenance over the decades and the devastation caused by Cyclone Nargis in 2008 have left the road network in the delta in poor condition, undermining economic and social development. Upgrading the network is now seen as a high priority.
“Cash crops and the production of high value seafood in the delta are not yet viable industries as the poor condition of the existing road network makes it difficult for products to reach markets,” said Mr Wicklein.
“Rehabilitation of this road will improve access to markets and help the otherwise productive agricultural areas of the delta realize their full economic potential,” he said.
In addition to the rebuilding of the road, the loan will be used to provide training and other capacity-building support to the Ministry of Construction to strengthen its project development capabilities.