ADB Announces Additional $43 Million Grant to Improve Road Sustainability in Southern Tajikistan
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved an extra grant of $43.2 million to improve the safety and reliability of the road network in southern Tajikistan and make it easier for women to participate in social and economic activities.
ADB Director General for Central and West Asia, Yevgeniy Zhukov, said:
"Given its mountainous terrain, landlocked location, and the fact that other modes of transport remain underdeveloped, roads play a key role in moving people and goods in Tajikistan, both domestically and internationally. ADB has provided comprehensive assistance to improve key international road corridors, and we’re now moving to help strengthen the domestic road network. This responds to the government’s needs.”
With the additional grant, a 40-kilometre stretch of road from Okmazor to Bokhtar in the crowded Khatlon region of southern Tajikistan will be fixed up. Climate-resilient features are built into the design to protect the road from extreme weather and make it usable all year. It also includes safety features to improve road users’ safety and comfort.
The money is in addition to a continuing ADB grant of $67.5 million given in 2020 to fix up the Dangara-Okmazor and Hulbuk-Kangurt road sections, help set up a system for managing the road's assets, and give women who live along those road sections opportunities to improve their social and economic lives.
The road sections are being repaired as part of the ongoing project and, with extra funding, link up with Asian Highway 66, a crucial transportation link connecting Asian and European countries. The project helps achieve the goals of the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) Programme by making it easier for national roads to connect to international corridors and making them more competitive.
ADB Transport Specialist for Central and West Asia, Rika Idei, said:
"This project will help strengthen regional connectivity in southern Tajikistan, with local people and businesses standing to benefit from the improved roads. Our ongoing assistance to develop the road asset management system will help the government identify where maintenance is needed and implement it timely—ultimately helping to ensure the long-term sustainability of roads.”
The project will also help women who live along the Okmazor–Bokhtar road section by giving them education programmes that teach them how to run businesses and manage their finances. The training will be delivered using mobile phones and schooling events.
Tajikistan has received about $2.5 billion in support from ADB since its inception in 1998, including over $1.8 billion in grants. Tajikistan's country partnership strategy for the period 2021–2025 focuses on three strategic priorities: structural reforms to improve resource allocation and mobilisation, improving labour productivity through human capital development, and fostering better livelihoods through investments in the land-linked economy.
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