A forty-seven million dollar agreement was signed between the government and CISCO Construction Limited on February twenty-eighth for the paving of twenty-three miles of the Southern Highway, leading to the Guatemalan border. Funds for that project are expected to be provided through a loan from the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development, the OPEC Fund for the International Development and the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI). The CABEI portion of the loan agreement was just approved by the House of Representatives at last Friday’s meeting. The loan of four point five million dollars has a term of twenty years at five point nine percent interest per annum. According to Prime Minister Dean Barrow, the Northern Highway will also be upgraded.
“We’re looking at trying to repair the Northern Highway, trying to widen it, trying to do proper drainage between the Haulover, from the Haulover Bridge going up and that’s what the one of the loan motions is about, the other is with respect to the Jalacte Road Project and that’s underway with the Northern Highway it is only for technical assistance this first amount in terms of the Jalacte Motion that started because we’ve already been able to draw down, since that is being co-financed by CABEI and the loan motion that we passed today had to do with the CABEI portion of the loan because OPEC is a part of the co-financing arrangement and we’ve already been able to draw down on the OPEC financing, that is in process that is in train even as we speak in fact I’m told that uh CISCO Construction has given about three hundred and thirty-odd jobs to villagers in the areas a consequence of that project having been commenced.”
The other loan of three hundred and fifty US dollars was approved on Friday to finance a feasibility study and designs for the upgrading of the Northern Highway from the Haulover Bridge to the junction of the old airport road. That loan is to be repaid in thirty-two quarterly payments at two and a half percent interest per annum.